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Work at Orange County Government Center nearing completion

May 23, 2017

The gut renovation and expansion of the long suffering Orange County Government Center in Goshen, NY, is nearing completion, but there is little reason to celebrate the milestone. One third of the Brutalist complex met its fate with the wrecking ball, while the rest was stripped to its structural bones—an architectural rape captured in disturbing photos. What stands there today is a ghost of Paul Rudolph’s 1970 corduroy concrete marvel. After all, what’s left after its exterior skin has been replaced and the interior floor plans obliterated to make way for double-loaded office corridors? Adding insult to injury is a bulky new addition that is in many ways the antithesis to Rudolph’s organic architecture. Such contrast does the overall complex no favors. His remaining unadulterated works have become all the more precious in light of this. May we not lose them too. 

Update: Renovation of Paul Rudolph’s Orange County Government Center nears completion,” The Architect’s Newspaper: April 25, 2017

Demolition underway at Orange County Government Building as legal battle continues,” DOCOMOMO NY/Tri-State: July 21, 2015

Top: Paul Rudolph's Orange County Government Center stripped to its structural skeleton © Harlan Erskine Bottom: The original 1970 portion of the center all new exterior cladding and new interior layout. Photo by Liz Waytkus/Docomomo US