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Columbia University Digital Knowledge Ventures The Architecture and Development of New York City with Andrew S. Dolkart
image The Public Realm Neighborhood Buildings
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Neighborhood Buildings
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It was in the second half of the nineteenth century that civic architecture really begins to flourish in New York, as the civic bureaucracies begin to expand, as the school system, the fire system, the police system are professionalized. And so suddenly you need buildings to house new fire companies and new police departments.

So you get a major, major expansion of the civic realm in the neighborhoods of New York. And for the first time civic buildings are appearing in residential neighborhoods in New York. And since these were a reflection of the civic realm in the residential neighborhoods, there was a conscious effort by the city to make these buildings prominent and beautiful.

And so fashionable styles were used, handsome materials were used, and so city buildings in the residential neighborhoods become a very, very important part of the New York streetscape.

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