The Significance of Seaview Hospital
and the Surrounding Historic District
Excerpted from
the NYC Landmarks Designation Report
Designation Date: March 26, 1985

On the basis of a careful consideration of the history, the architecture and other features of this area, the Landmarks Preservation Commission finds that the New York City Farm Colony / Seaview Hospital Historic District contains buildings and other improvements which have special character, special historical and aesthetic interest and value and which represent one or more periods or styles of architecture characteristic of one or more eras in the history of New York City and which cause this area, by reason of these factors to constitute a distinct section of the City.

The Commission further finds that, among its important qualities the New York City Farm Colony / Seaview Hospital Historic District reflects the innovative architecture of New York City's turn-of the-century commitment to improving the quality of social and health-care services received by members of its dependent community.

The proto-modern Seaview Hospital complex, planned and built between 1905 - 1938, was the largest and most costly municipal facility for the treatment of tuberculosis of its date in the country. The size of the complex was commensurate with the scope of the responsibility assumed by the City of New York in the world wide campaign mounted at the end of the 19th century to eradicate "the white plague." The building complex, together with its careful siting, adjacent landscaping and wooded surroundings, create the total therapeutic environment believed necessary for the successful treatment of tuberculosis.

Its design required from the architect a synthesis of architectural and planning skills for which few precedents existed. Of the many public buildings designed by Raymond F. Almirall for the City of New York, Seaview Hospital was considered by him to be his most significant. Further adding to its significance is the fact that the first successful clinical trials of drugs which finally yielded the long-sought non-deleterious cure for tuberculosis were conducted at Seaview Hospital.

Terra Cotta

Return to Preservation Alert: Women's Ward Pavilions at Seaview

last revised March 15 1998
by David Goldfarb