There was quite a to-do this afternoon when the folks behind Village hotspot The Lion—which resides in and capitalizes upon a very historic 1839 space—appeared before the Landmarks Preservation Committee. Here's why: Last November, the LPC approved some changes to the building at 62 West 9th Street. But they never approved the faux ivy that now covers the facade nor did they okay the plywood planter box above the awning which holds small lights, is a planter for real ivy, and holds up the awning. The restaurant rep argued that the faux ivy is "a look" and that it will be replaced by real ivy once it grows in.
Aside: what is it with restaurants these days and fake ivy?
Community Board 2, Greenwich Village Society for Historic Preservation (GVSHP), and the Historic Districts Council all have problems with the ivy. They called it "inappropriate"—as a historic district, they need real materials!—noted that there is no legal guarantee that it would eventually be removed, and worried there might be damage to the facade when it is removed (it's nailed in).
Additionally, the LPC was somewhat insulted that they would want to cover up the facade and were very vocal about their resentment for not being asked for permission (how rude!). They denied the restaurant's application to legalize the ivy and other work and told them to head back to the drawing board.
—Reporting by Deanna Kawitzky
· All Coverage of The Lion [~ENY~]