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  • Approved for CNN

  • Click to view marjfz's profile
    Posted November 6, 2013 by
    marjfz
    Location
    New York City, New York
    Assignment
    Assignment
    This iReport is part of an assignment:
    Re-purposed buildings

    More from marjfz

    The Limelight - Repurposed more than most

     

    CNN PRODUCER NOTE     Although marjfz does not frequently visit The Limelight, she has admired the many transformations of the building on the Avenue of America in New York, NY. "Although it still looks like a gothic church on the outside," said Zien, "the space has been repurposed for various uses over the years."
    - CYDFISH7, CNN iReport producer

    This Gothic Revival brownstone building was built in 1844-1845 as the Episcopal Church of the Holy Communion, designed by Richard Upjohn. It remained a church for over 120 years. In the 1970’s the church merged with 2 others and no longer needed this space. Odyssey House, a drug rehab facility bought the building, but due to hardship, it was once again sold to none other than the “King of New York Clubs”, Peter Gatien, in 1982. It started out as a disco, and evolved into a rock club.

     

    I visited the club occasionally in the '80s, mostly out of curiosity, although I wasn't a club kid and it really wasn't my scene. I remember a dark interior with vaulted ceilings and many nooks and crannies.

     

    By the 1990’s it once again morphed into a techno, goth and industrial music club, also known as a place to obtain and use recreational drugs. The claim to fame back then was when club kid/party promoter Michael Alig, was arrested and convicted in the brutal killing of Angel Melendez, a drug dealer.

     

    Subsequently, the Limelight was closed by police and reopened several times in the 1990’s, trying to clean up its act. In 2003, it was renamed the Avalon, but closed once again a few years later.

     

    Since May 2010, it has become a marketplace, containing a variety of clothing, accessory and food boutiques.

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