The 70s in Retrospect
Something peculiar is happening to the buildings of the 1970s. They’re turning 50, as Docomomo recently reminded us. This milestone birthday for the designs of the decade gives them enough critical distance that their restoration worthiness is being reconsidered. Whether derided or embraced, 70s architecture is now undeniably historic.
From the sweeping travertine and glass skin of the Solow building to the chunky masonry of the Lincoln Plaza Towers, SUPERSTRUCTURES has helped restore exemplars of 70s architecture in New York City and beyond. Our experience has demonstrated some of the challenges unique to restoring late modern buildings: glazed brick that tends to spall in New York’s freeze-thaw cycle; white-finished surfaces that are hard to keep clean; and extensive curtain wall sealants that can fail and allow water infiltration.
Other 70s projects in our portfolio include:
- The Harlem School for the Arts
- Ellicott Campus, SUNY Buffalo
- Walsh Hall, Fordham University
- International Affairs Building (Plaza), Columbia University
- Residential Towers, SUNY Albany
- One New York Plaza
- Bobst Library, NYU
- Kibbee Library and Media Center, Kingsboro Community College
- Cathedral Parkway Towers
- Staller Center for the Arts, Stony Brook University
We treat every building like a landmark, designated or not. Our work is only part of a building’s history and that context—whether from the 1870s or 1970s—always informs our approach.