Programs and Services

The Conservancy’s combination of financial assistance and technical expertise distinguishes us from other, similar groups. We are one of the largest preservation groups in the country, and very few can match our range of nationally recognized programs and resources. From saving one building at a time in Lower Manhattan when we began, to currently overseeing more than 100 projects a year across the City and State, the Conservancy has adapted to changing needs and demands.

Sacred Sites — one of the first programs in the country to assist landmark religious properties.
EZ (Empowerment Zone) Consulting Grants is a program that provides matching funds for professional services.
New York City is fortunate to have so many historic homes — and the financial and technical assistance to help preserve them.

After four decades, we are proud to see the difference our work has made.

The Sacred Sites Program — one of the first programs in the country to assist landmark religious properties — provides loans, grants, and technical assistance throughout the State. In addition, the program hosts regular workshops to help congregations with everything from energy conservation to fundraising.

The City Ventures Fund offers grants and loans to non-profit developers of affordable housing and other services that benefit lower-income communities, in non-landmark, architecturally significant buildings. It has provided over $1.5 million in financial assistance, resulting in the creation of more than 800 affordable apartments. The City Ventures Fund also promotes neighborhood renewal through grants and project management assistance to non-profit community organizations that own historic buildings or rehabilitate older buildings for low and moderate income housing and social service needs. Our grants have helped housing projects supportive of people living with AIDS/HIV and victims of domestic violence, a Lower East Side community center and dozens of other properties.

The Emergency Grant Program addresses immediate hazards to landmark properties owned by non-profits organizations. It has underwritten over $545,000 in grants since its establishment in 1999. The Emergency Preservation Grant Program has helped non-profits within the five boroughs including: King Manor, an 1806 National Historic Landmark in Queens, the James Renwick designed former Smallpox Hospital on Roosevelt Island, the Magnolia Tree Earth Center in Brooklyn and Historic Richmond Town on Staten Island. Special Post-Sandy Emergency Grants included: a historic print shop in an 1830’s building at the South Street Seaport; the Police Museum on the Lower Manhattan waterfront; Green-Wood Cemetery in Brooklyn and Woodlawn Cemetery in the Bronx, both National Historic Landmarks; the 1700 Alice Austen House on Staten Island, the 1836 Bartow-Pell Mansion in the Bronx and the 1765 Morris-Jumel Mansion in Upper Manhattan.

EZ (Empowerment Zone) Consulting Grants is a program that provides matching funds for professional services — from architects, engineers, and building conservators — to religious properties of architectural, historic, and cultural merit in Upper Manhattan.

The Historic Properties Fund is one of the nation’s largest revolving loan funds used exclusively for historic preservation. It has committed over $25 million in low-interest loans to more than 240 buildings in all five boroughs. The loans target homeowners in lower and moderate income areas, small apartment buildings and historic facilities owned by non-profit and religious institutions. The Landmarks Conservancy staff provides important project management assistance to assess building needs, develop an affordable financial package, find appropriate architects and contractors, and help ensure successful restorations and repairs.

The Queens Historic Properties Fund offers low-interest loans and project management assistance to owners of historic residential, non-profit, religious, and commercial buildings in Queens. The Queens Historic Properties Fund is a partnership between the New York Landmarks Conservancy and the Queens Historical Society.

The Technical Services program provides expert architectural and preservation advice to property owners, developers, and contractors. Staff members answer hundreds of calls and makes dozens of site visits each year. The Technical Services Center has consulted in the restoration and adaptive reuse of projects as diverse as the 1901 City Hall Subway Station; the 1962 TWA terminal by Eero Saarinen; and the 1799 Blackwell Farm House on Roosevelt Island. It assists property owners on a daily basis answering questions on restoration and the Landmarks Commission approval process, and offering referrals to a variety of experienced professionals, contractors and craftsmen.

The Conservancy has been accepting Historic Preservation Easements for over 40 years and currently administers 41. An easement is a legal agreement that aims to protect a significant historic property or landscape by restricting future changes to or development on the site.