Watch this video by a New York native about Greenwich village. What shines through is the deep love this man has for where he lives. And there are of course 1,000′s of New Yorkers just like him.
So when a block comes up for redevelopment in Greenwich Village at the very least you can expect a fight. Because everyone loves the scale and feel of this placeand everyone also assumed redevelopment fights in the area had been fought and won long ago.
But a strange series of events is creating another gentrification battle in this beautiful part of New York City.
At the heart of what is happening is an old farmhouse of uncertain age at 121 Charles St. All that is known about it is that it is indeed old, and that it was originally on a back block at 71st St and York Ave in the Upper East Side, but that that was probably not where it was originally built either because that site is church land.
In the 1940′s, the author of goodnight Moon, Margaret Wise Brown lived in it in the U.E.S. Then it was renovated and bought by Swedish couple in the 1960′s.
Because it was on land owned by the Catholic church it had to be moved, so the Swedish couple found this irregular plot of land in Charles Street, Greenwich Village and had the farmhouse carefully moved to it, including in the move its very own cobbled driveway.
As the current owner has now put it up for sale for $20m, a storm has broken out in Greenwich Village. The Greenwich Village Society for Historic Preservation it totally against the farmhouse being demolished as it well could be.
The house itself is only 1,000 squ ft. and the block is 4,868 squ ft, obviously making it attractive to some kind of redevelopment and certainly the price asked for the block and farmhouse puts it far beyond the the reach of most New Yorkers.
It’s strictly a case of watch this space as the many Greenwich village locals seek to keep things exactly as they are and developers calculate how they could use the block as a development property.
Wouldn’t it be interesting if this already much moved around little farmhouse was moved once again. Is it important that the farmhouse is saved, or that it is saved right here in Greenwich Village.