Is nothing sacred in New York? Yesterday the legendary graffiti spot 5 Pointz in Long Island City was whitewashed by developers who have plans to convert the old warehouse into residential and retail space. Today, it seems like the city's Worlds Fair Pavilion may also be doomed for destruction.
Yesterday, the Parks Department informed Queens residents that it would cost $43 million to save the Pavilion. If the public desired to transform it into something new, that would tack on an addition $30 million. At the same time, the Queens Parks Commissioner Dorothy Lewandowski admitted that there is not need for immediate repair, so its up for debate what will happen to this New York landmark.
Designed by architect Philip Johnson in 1964, the Pavilion is the crumbling vision of what the '60s thought the future would be, complete with alien saucers (there's a reason why its the site of the climax of Men in Black). Besides being a New York landmark, Johnson's construction is also undeniably beautiful. The fetishized structure falls under the category of ruin porn, desirable in its filthy ruin.
This summer, New York filmmaker Matthew Silva was creating a documentary about the Pavilion in hopes to raise awareness to save the structure. The film is expected to be released for the Pavilion's 50th anniversary next year. While he doesn't expect his film to raise $43 million, Silva suggests that a public-private partnership like the one that runs the High Line could be a solution.