Broadway Fashion Building
Broadway and 84th Street
Sugarman & Berger, 1930-31

The Broadway Fashion Building has been turning heads since it was built in the early 1930s. Its Art Deco style and materials give this sleek, four-story structure an appeal and distinction that belies its modest size. The AIA Guide to New York City Architecture (Norval White and Elliot Willensky, 4th ed., 2000) describes its significance as follows: "Long before the curtain walls of metal and glass descended upon midtown, this curtain wall of metal and glass and glazed terra cotta came to grace Broadway." Architects Sugarman & Berger, prolific designers of both residential and commercial buildings throughout New York City, caught the critics' attention in their day as well. As the Broadway Fashion Building was under construction, The New York Times remarked that the "façades will be 90 per cent glass, with white stainless metal for decorative work," in vivid contrast to neighboring buildings of solid masonry. The Times also noted that "a system of exterior and interior illumination will give the structure an unusual appearance at night." The building was intended to glow in the evening, while during the day the nearly all-glass design allowed natural light to reach the high-end retail shops on each of the floors.