St. Joan of Arc Church
Address: 35th Avenue at 83rd Street
Neighborhood: Jackson Heights
Architect: Schulsing, Christian
Current Status: Extant
Award: Bronze Plaque for Public Buildings
Typology: Religious Building
One of the few award winning buildings to be included in a historic district, this means that for all intensive purposes, St. Joan of Arc Church will remain a neighborhood landmark for perpetuity. Of course, judging from the complex, the church doesn’t need any assistance in this regard.
The church is just one building in a much larger complex including a rectory, convent, primary school and meeting hall, all of which seem well-used and maintained. The school (1924-Steinback and Murphy), rectory (1926-Murphy and Lehman), convent (1940-Henry V. Murphy) and Ward Meehan Hall (1961-LaPierre and Litchfield) were all completed by architects recognized for their work throughout Queens.
According to the LPC designation report, one reason the church is much later than other buildings on the site is that plans for a cathedral were never approved and so an original plan from 1927 ended with only the basement being completed. New plans were unveiled in 1941 but not implemented until 1949, which could be one reason for the building’s more historist neo-Romanesque appearance rather than something more overtly modern. Still the building is a handsome and commanding presence on its corner site and also features lavish decoration including some striking mid-century mosaics inside.
Pearson, Marjorie. “Jackson Heights Historic District designation report” NYC Landmarks Preservation Commission. 19 Oct. 1993. Web.