Final Paper

For your Final Paper you can choose one of the two topics outlined below. Paper length is 6-8 pages, double spaced, plus a works cited page.

Topic A: Systems

The growth and development of infrastructure goes hand-in-hand with urban development. These technical structures support and influence the functioning of a city, as well as its form, at every scale, be it the region, neighborhood, or individual building. For this paper, pick one of the broad topics listed below, and define a specific aspect of the topic to explore. Trace your topic's role in the city's development from the time of the early settlement of the city to today. At each phase of development of your system, clearly illustrate the impact it has on the physical form of the city and its buildings during that time period.


For example, for transportation you may wish to focus on a topic such as personal modes of transportation, public transportation, water-borne transportation, street-level transportation, below-ground transportation, air transportation, vertical transportation, etc.

Answer questions such as how did the infrastructure begin to develop? When did it begin to take off/achieve critical mass? What technologies were involved? What roles did the public and private sectors play in its development? What impact did it have on the city as a whole? Did it impact different groups or different areas unequally? Did it give rise to a new building type? How did it change existing building types? How did it evolve?

Topic B: Landmarks

A defining phenomenon of New York City is its constant building, continuous cycles of tearing down of the old for erection of the new. As early as the 1850s, some residents of the city sought to protect historic buildings against demolition, but it wasn't until the large urban renewal projects in the early 1960s that large public outcry against the destruction inherent in these projects led to a legally robust system for preservation. Since the establishment of the Landmarks Preservation Committee in 1965, hundreds of buildings have been landmarked within the five boroughs.

Your task is to argue for the preservation of an existing building in any of the five boroughs that is not currently a landmark building.

As a front page to your paper, attach a Request for Evaluation form. The following 6-8 pages of the body of your "paper" will be your report of the building in order to gain it landmark status. Begin your report with a very clear thesis/argument as to why this building must be preserved. Topics you should cover: history of the building; historical, current, and future significance of the building; significance of the building within its neighborhood; current use and condition of the building; possible threats to the building. Your report should include pictures of the building and a site map.

Landmarks Online Resources

NYC Landmarks Preservation Commission:

Map of Landmarks:

Designation Reports:

[_] Your name is on your paper.
[_] Paper is double spaced.
[_] Clear and interesting thesis statement (focus is clearly stated and defined)
[_] Proofread for spelling and grammar mistakes.
[_] Quotations are effective, and kept to a minimum.
[_] Sources are cited according to MLA format in the body of the paper.
[_] Minimum of five sources are cited in MLA works cited format.