by: AIA New York
It is with great sadness that we inform our membership that Lee Harris Pomeroy, FAIA, founder and design principal of LHP Architects, passed away suddenly on February 18. Lee was an innovative architect with a passion for New York City and its public institutions and saw public architecture as one of the profession’s greatest callings. Lee’s historic preservation work helped redefine how architects think about restoring and using public spaces.
Born in Brooklyn in 1932, Lee studied architecture at Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute and received a master’s degree in architecture from Yale University. He was recognized for the restoration of New York landmarks such as the Plaza Hotel, St. James and Trinity Churches, and Grand Central Terminal, as well as many of the city’s early-20th-century subway stations. In recent years, his practice extended to projects in distant parts of the world, among them the Binhai Convention Center in Tianjin, China and the East-West Metro Railway in Kolkata, India.
Lee’s early interest in urban planning influenced his work throughout his career. One of his early adaptive reuse projects, the Henry Street Studios in Brooklyn, involved the conversion of a 19th-century candy factory into studios and housing units for working artists. When the demolition of historic Broadway theaters was proposed to make room for a new Marriott Hotel in Times Square, Lee worked with preservation groups, eventually helping to draft the plan to establish the Historic Broadway Theater District. Lee’s plan for Fulton Street Pedestrian Mall and Transitway in downtown Brooklyn won the Bard Award for Excellence in Architecture and Urban Design from The City Club of New York.
In the area of residential architecture, Lee’s portfolio was diverse and prolific. Early in his career, he designed condominium communities in Connecticut and Westchester County. One noteworthy project on Manhattan’s Central Park West entailed the adaptive reuse of a multilevel space within the historic St. Urban.
Lee’s creative spirit and design inspiration will be sorely missed; those who had the opportunity to work with him will never forget his gentle yet authoritative voice. LHP Architects, which was founded as Lee Harris Pomeroy Architects in the 1960s, will continue its work under the leadership of principals Antonio Figueroa, AIA, and Bernard Kho, AIA, focusing on projects for NYC agencies and institutions. Currently, they are working on the upgrade and modernization of subways on Manhattan’s West Side under Governor Cuomo’s Enhanced Station Initiative, as well as educational facilities on Rikers Island for the NYC Department of Corrections.