The New York City Landmarks Preservation Commission has approved a plan to replace St. Vincent's Hospital with residential towers and townhouses.
The panel had already given St. Vincent's permission to build a new hospital tower near its current Greenwich Village location. The commission voted today to approve housing that would replace or reuse the old hospital buildings.
The project still needs the approval of the Planning Commission and the City Council. It is being developed by the Rudin Organization.
Preservationists have opposed the project. But landmarks panel chairman Robert Tierney said the developer has listened to criticism and changed the plan so it fits the neighborhood better.
Earlier this year, the developer went back to the Preservation office with a new plan which reduced the size of the new residential tower to 218 feet, down from the original proposal of 266 feet.
Analysts said that barring any hiccups in the Planning Commission, the O'Toole Building at Seventh Avenue and 13th Street would come down for the new elliptical hospital tower. After that's done, sometime around 2014, the current St. Vincent's medical building across the street would be razed for the apartment building.