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Building Bronxville With Legos: See Photos PDF Print Email

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By Suzanne Davis, Board Member, The Bronxville Historical Conservancy

Feb. 12, 2020: It turns out that LEGOs can teach kids to admire architecture and beauty in their community. That’s exactly what happened to more than 50 families in the Bronxville School gym on Super Bowl Sunday afternoon. Third through sixth-grade students took a closer look at the gables, arches, and columns on Bronxville buildings as they recreated them out of LEGO bricks.

It was the third year that the Bronxville Historical Conservancy (BHC) sponsored the popular event, “Building Bronxville Brick By Brick,” — the brainchild of Stephen Schwartz, an architect and the creator of Building Blocks Workshop. 

Schwartz offers similar events in other towns, such as Montclair, NJ, and Westport, CT, as he leads students in building replicas of their communities. 

In Bronxville, attendees chose from a carefully curated collection of 60 significant public and private structures.

Schwartz supplied 70,000 multi-colored LEGO bricks in plastic bins, and he challenged the children and their parents to visualize Bronxville in a new way. 

The families picked their buildings from a single photograph, and they used their imagination to fill in any blanks. The Kennedy house (Crownlands), the Bronxville Women’s Club, and St. Joseph’s Church were among the many structures chosen for construction.

“It’s a fantastic event that brings the community together. It weaves in historical creativity, and there’s not a screen in sight,” said Rob Rosenberg, who built Bronxville’s Village Hall with his 9-year old daughter, Coco Rosenberg. The Rosenbergs and their mini-municipal building got a surprise visit from its primary occupant, Mayor Mary Marvin.

Meanwhile, the Bond-O’Gorman family came early to snag the historic Hotel Gramatan arcade, which was a massive undertaking. “It’s a cool building,” said 9-year old Jessica O’Gorman.

“I liked seeing it done,” added 9-year old Jack O’Gorman.

After 90 minutes of construction time, the completed structures were carefully transported to a large, scaled map of Bronxville positioned on the gym floor. 

After they were photographed and sufficiently admired, Schwartz asked everyone to dismantle the creations and return the LEGOs to the bins, brick by brick.

On the way out, each student received a guided walking tour of the village, and they were encouraged to go on an architectural treasure hunt in the future.

“Building Bronxville Brick By Brick” was organized by BHC board members Mike Heraty, Michelle McBride, Suzanne Davis, and BHC co-founder Marilynn Hill.

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Photos by Maria Golingan

 



















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Government & History Directory

Bronxville Overview

Bronxville Overview

Bronxville is a quaint village (one square mile) located just 16 miles north of midtown Manhattan (roughly 30 minutes on the train) and has a population of approximately 6,500. It is known as a premier community with an excellent public school (K-12) and easy access to Manhattan. Bronxville offers many amenities including an attractive business district, a hospital (Lawrence Hospital), public paddle and tennis courts, fine dining at local restaurants, two private country clubs and a community library.

While the earliest settlers of Bronxville date back to the first half of the 18th century, the history of the modern suburb of Bronxville began in 1890 when William Van Duzer Lawrence purchased a farm and commissioned the architect, William A. Bates, to design a planned community of houses for well-known artists and professionals that became a thriving art colony. This community, now called Lawrence Park, is listed on the National register of Historic Places and many of the homes still have artists’ studios. A neighborhood association within Lawrence Park called “The Hilltop Association” keeps this heritage alive with art shows and other events for neighbors.

Bronxville offers many charming neighborhoods as well as a variety of living options for residents including single family homes, town houses, cooperatives and condominiums. One of the chief benefits of living in “the village” is that your children can attend the Bronxville School.

The Bronxville postal zone (10708, known as “Bronxville PO”) includes the village of Bronxville as well as the Chester Heights section of Eastchester, parts of Tuckahoe and the Lawrence Park West, Cedar Knolls, Armour Villa and Longvale sections of Yonkers. Many of these areas have their own distinct character. For instance, the Armour Villa section has many historic homes and even has its own newsletter called “The Villa Voice” which reports on neighborhood news.

Bronxville Village Government Directory

Village of Bronxville Administrative Offices
337-6500
Open 9:00am - 4pm excluding holidays and weekends


Bronxville Police Department
337-0500
Open 24 hours


Bronxville Parking Violations
337-2024
Open 9:00am - 4pm excluding holidays and weekends


Bronxville Fire Deparment
793-6400


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