March 7, 2018 By Tara Law
An Astoria home that dates to the 1870s is currently being bulldozed.
Contractors have started dismantling the 31-07 31st Street structure which is commonly referred to as the “Dulcken House,” after one of its past owners.
Ferdinand Quentin Dulcken, an English composer and pianist, lived in the house in the late 19th Century. He was deemed by some historians as having a major impact on classical music in New York.
The 2 ½ story house had fallen into disrepair over the years and was sold for $1.38 million in August 2015 to George Hrisikopoulos.
Hrisikopoulos filed an application with the Dept. of Buildings on March 6, 2017 to construct a 6-story mixed use building with 10 apartments and a restaurant on the first floor. He also filed for a demolition permit in July.
After learning of the building’s impending fate, neighborhood residents, including members of the Astoria Historic Society, mounted a campaign to save it. The organization launched a petition on Change.org to have the building protected on March 13, which was signed by nearly 500 people.
The society also submitted a Request for Evaluation to the Landmarks Preservation Commission.
The application was rejected in May. In a statement, the commission said that the building had been too substantially altered to warrant historic status. The property had been converted from a single-family home to a 14-room single room occupancy building.