Feb. 19, 2015 By Christian Murray
Sunnyside’s trash is about to become another city’s treasure.
The 1931 Aluminaire House, which was going to be erected on the corner of 39th Avenue and 50th Street, is being transported to Palm Springs. The mayor of Palm Springs is a big supporter of relocating it there and has started a fundraising drive in order to do so, according to The Desert Sun.
The structure appeared headed to Sunnyside Gardens, where architects in 2013 planned to build eight residential units behind the aluminum house on the former Phipps playground.
The house was designed in 1931 and is deemed to be of architectural significance. It was designed to explore how materials like aluminum could be used to build low-cost housing.
However, Sunnyside residents rejected the plan—and the house–and believed that the showpiece was out of character with the existing red-brick homes in the landmarked neighborhood.
Councilman Jimmy Van Bramer, at the landmarks hearing that decided whether it could go up in the neighborhood, said that more than 350 people had contacted his office in opposition to the proposal, with only five voicing their support.
State Sen. Mike Gianaris, at the same meeting, said: “I’ve been in public service for 13 years and I have seen community boards discuss all sort of things…but I have not seen such uniform opposition as with this project.”
The Landmarks Commission rejected the plan in January 2014.
However, the aluminum structure is very much wanted in Palm Springs.
The Mayor of Palm Springs has raised $200,000 of the $600,000 needed to bring it there in just one month.
The funds are needed to be transported the home, which is in a crate, and reassemble it.
At a recent $250 per-person fundraiser to bring the structure to Palm Springs, the mayor of that city reportedly said:
“If you have a product, that is an incredible product, people want to be a part of it. Hopefully, a year from now, we’ll be having one heck of a party in downtown Palm Springs.”