Expect lots of construction activity along East 74th Street in the New Year. Weill Cornell Medicine plans to demolish the current Church of the Epiphany at 1393 York Avenue after the parish moves one block west.
Weill Cornell purchased the site for its future medical school tower from Church of the Epiphany in 2018. This agreement allowed Epiphany to buy 351 East 74th Street, formerly home to the Jan Hus Presbyterian Church built in 1888. “We didn’t want to sell our property and be homeless, and we couldn’t afford to buy Jan Hus without selling our own building,” Reverend Jennifer Reddall told Our Town.
When Epiphany heads down the street next year, Weill Cornell will level the 82-year-old church building and begin construction of its 17-story, $264 million dollar tower in June 2022, Patch reports. When the medical residence opens in 2025, students will be able to enjoy 173,000 square feet and a fitness center just a few blocks from its educational headquarters.
“Epiphany’s new home will be its sixth since its founding downtown in 1833,” the church’s website states. It’s been at its current location since 1939. “Moving one block west will give Epiphany an additional 15,000 square feet … Epiphany’s commitment remains to build a structurally sound building that is fully ADA accessible, energy efficient and meets the needs and expectations of a 21st century parish and community.”
In addition to a new chapel and columbarium, the reconstruction will add elevator access to all six floors, which will include a new rooftop garden and play area, a school gymnasium lit by energy efficient windows, a library, auditorium, and five new classrooms. “The Carter Burden Network’s Senior Lunch Program will serve meals from a fully-equipped modern kitchen capable of preparing and packaging up to 1000 meals a day.”
Church services and classes are ongoing at the York Avenue location, with work at the new site about 70% complete. Epiphany expects in-person school instruction to begin September 2022.