Merchant’s House Hearing Postponed

merchants houseDaniel Maurer The museum’s fence got a new coat of paint today.

Word just came down from the Landmarks Preservation Commission that a critical hearing on a proposed nine-story hotel next-door to the Merchant’s House Museum has been postponed so that the developer can have more time to prepare a presentation. A spokeswoman said the developer has asked to present the project on July 24.

“I feel like we’ve just come off the L.P.C. ledge,” joked Margaret Halsey Gardener, the executive director of the museum. She added that dialogue between the museum and SRA Architects, which is designing the proposed hotel, has improved since last month. The developer recently installed a seismograph in the museum to monitor construction in the lot on East Fourth Street near Bowery.

But the concerns regarding the hotel’s impact on the house’s structure — as well as the experience for museum visitors — remain. In fact, when the developer recently dug test pits to examine the foundation of the lot “the house was shaking pretty violently,” Ms. Gardener said.

Update | 4:30 p.m. Breaking News: The Merchant’s House Museum’s fence just got a new coat of paint, as pictured above.