In 1976, walking through the dilapidated manufacturing district south of Houston Street, once known as Hell’s Hundred Acres, he was attracted by its imposing cast-iron architecture and realized that the vast loft spaces in the factories there could be appealing places to live. “I saw the architectural aura of the neighborhood,” Mr. Goldman told Preservation, the magazine of the National Historical Trust, in 2010. “The cast-iron district expressed a powerful sense of place that didn’t exist, that doesn’t exist, in many places in the world. But it was the historic fabric, first and foremost, that captivated my attention and interest.”…On a trip to a developers’ conference in Miami in 1985, Mr. Goldman went with local preservationists to see crumbling Art Deco hotels along a section of turquoise ocean in Miami Beach. Seeing the area’s potential, he started buying — one building a month for 18 months.
NEW YORK – Tony Goldman, whose investor’s eye for spotting battered neighborhoods prime for rejuvenation led him to help revive SoHo in Manhattan in the 1970s and South Beach in Florida in the ’80s, died on Tuesday in Manhattan. He was 68. The cause was heart failure, his wife, Janet Goldman, said. Mr. Goldman did not like to be called a developer. “Developers are knock ’em down, build ’em up guys,” he told The New York Times in 2000. “That’s not me.” Instead, he saw himself as a long-term investor in the revitalization of historic neighborhoods.
By Leslie Kaufman, Sept. 15, 2012 NYT
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