Friday, June 21

Corn Exchange Bank Building

Question: What can you tell me about the building at 125th Street and Park Avenue that I see from the Metro- North station? . . . M. S., Katonah, N.Y. Answer: The Corn Exchange Bank Building is one of the few notable buildings surviving along Harlem’s main thoroughfare, in the opinion of Marjorie Pearson, director of research for the Landmarks Preservation Commission. It was designed by the architectural firm of Lamb & Rich and constructed in 1883 with five stories, including six ”french flats” on the three upper floors. Two more stories were added later, she said. A report for a hearing to consider landmark status for the building said it was constructed for the Mount Morris Bank and taken over by the Corn Exchange Bank in 1913. It was used as a bank until the 1960’s when it was leased by a variety of commercial tenants and became the home of storefront churches. Now vacant, the building has been owned by the city since 1982. (Source: The New York Times, January 13, 1985)