PARKCHESTER, the Bronx (PIX11) – A Bronx woman is on a mission to protect hundreds of terracotta sculptures in her Parkchester neighborhood.
Sharon Pandolfo Pérez is an advertising executive during the day, but she says it’s the love of the local history of her Bronx community that has become her passion. She feels a purpose to let her neighbors know they are surrounded by beautiful art every day.
“We sometimes take it for granted. What makes it so amazing is their architectural design,” said Pandolfo Pérez , the founder of the Parkchester Project.
Pandolfo Pérez sounds like a history professor and a tour guide. She grew up in Parkchester. She says it’s the largest sculptural garden in New York City, and most people don’t even know it.
On McGraw Avenue, you can see four terracotta sculptures from the World War II era. Pandolfo Pérez was moved by the beauty and culture that graces the facades of almost all of the Parkchester buildings. She is now starting a community movement and wants to preserve the works of art, with the help of the nonprofit Historic Districts Council.
A spokesperson for the New York City Landmarks Preservation Commission said, “The Landmarks Preservation Commission agrees that the terra cotta decorative elements on the Parkchester complex buildings are of note, and we hear members of the community saying that they are special. LPC must evaluate the entirety of the Parkchester complex for architectural merit and historic significance. The agency is currently doing a study of the complex, which consists of 51 clusters of 7-13 story brick buildings and contains more than 12,000 apartments.”