The 92nd Street Y has officially been rebranded as The 92nd Street Y, New York — or 92NY for short — and is embarking on a $200 million plan to renovate its space at 1395 Lexington Avenue.
The Covid-19 Pandemic forced 92NY, like many other cultural and art institutions, to bring its programming online. Over the past two years, this has opened its doors to a whole new audience, with viewers in all 50 states and in over 200 countries.
Working with design firm Pentagram, the rebranding goal is to reflect the UES institution’s global reach while affirming its NYC roots.
In addition to the new name and a new logo, the entire campus will be undergoing an enhancement over the course of the next few years. Renovations will take place one at a time in order to keep the doors open for 92NY’s more than 300,000 annual visitors.
Some of the changes to look forward to include a full renovation of Buttenweiser Hall, one of its public performance spaces, a new state-of-the-art dance center, and an upgraded May Center Gym.
Seth Pinsky, CEO of 92NY, spoke with Gothamist about the need for a rebranding stemming from the pandemic. “We realized, in relatively short order, that we weren’t just a New York institution anymore — we were a global institution,” Pinsky said. “We think that it’s an important part of explaining who we are, because an institution like the 92nd Street Y really couldn’t exist anywhere other than New York.”
“I’d like to believe that this kind of re-imagination of an institution like the 92nd Street Y is something that’s happening all across New York, which will allow all of us to emerge from this pandemic in a better place than we were before,” said Pinsky. “And so what we’re going through makes me very hopeful for our own future, but it also makes me very hopeful about the future of New York.”
The 92nd Street Y was founded in 1874 by a group of German Jewish professionals, and over the course of almost 150 years, it has been providing NYC with programming across a vast array of cultural areas including performing and visual arts, literature, and educational programming for children and adults. They are now introducing Roundtable, a new digital platform “…filled with hundreds of hours of thoughtfully curated courses designed to enlighten, delight and inspire curious minds.”