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32 Second Avenue, Lower East Side A rendering of the changes to the landmarked builing at 32 Second Avenue. Permits were filed this week to expand the building for a library and cafe. (Image via Bone/Levine Architects)
The historic building at 32 Second Avenue may soon have a new look. The 1920-built structure opened as the Manhattan Third District Magistrate's Courthouse but since 1979 has been owned by the Anthology Film Archives. It is designated as a New York City landmark as part of the East Village/Lower East Side Historic District, and permits were recently filed to marginally alter the structure so it may continue to operate as a functional space for the avant-garde film institution and cinema.

Anthology Film Archives opened their doors to the public in 1989 and though the building had been repurposed from a judicial building, the vision was incomplete. Currently, the building has two theaters and a film fault, but as an international film archive that must remain financially viable to operate, original plans called for a materials library and a cafe. Both will finally be added according to new plans drafted by Bone/Levine Architects, the designers of the alteration. The full proposal adds a cafe to the first floor, a fourth floor library, and a multi-purpose penthouse floor.

The alteration would add 8,329 square feet to the structure, growing the building's space to more than 21,400 square feet. The addition would raise the structure by 18 feet, from 46 to 64, and an elevator would also be added. Take a look at the project's renderings courtesy of Bone/Levine Architects below.
32 Second Avenue, Lower East Side Rendering with the proposed cafe, library and multi-purpose penthouse (Image via Bone/Levine Architects)
32 Second Avenue, Lower East Side Multi-purpose penthouse space (Image via Bone/Levine Architects)
32 Second Avenue, Lower East Side Schematic of the redesigned first floor with cafe (Image via Bone/Levine Architects)
32 Second Avenue, Lower East Side The new fourth floor library (Image via Bone/Levine Architects)
Contributor E. Fitzgerald Emily is a Brooklyn-based writer who has covered New York City real estate, architecture and design for Brownstoner, The Wall Street Journal, Dwell and other publications. You can follow her on Twitter @EmilyNonko.
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