Just yesterday we were discussing the destruction of the Rivington Street Temple. That was a real loss for the Lower East Side. The building was a classic: arguably beautiful, with real historic value. Contrast that to the Catholic Center at NYU at 58 Washington Square South. This is an ugly building, styled in the conventions of the post-war brutalism movement. The interior is slightly more pleasing to the eye, but the overall, the structure is a blight on the neighborhood. As such, we were glad to hear news that the Archdiosese has decided to knock it down. Washington Square News reports:

A hangman’s house turned house of God, the Catholic Center at NYU has its share of idiosyncrasies — including a six-pointed star.

But after 42 years of sitting on Washington Square South, the building and its stained-glass Star of David will be torn down at the end of the summer because of its dire conditions, financial issues stemming from a pricey energy bill and the possibility of better utilizing of the space.

The 315-person capacity chapel, which currently serves the NYU Roman Catholic community, will be rebuilt in two or three years. The smaller 100-person capacity chapel will only occupy part of the 35,000 square foot plot, said Father John P. McGuire, the Director of the Catholic Center. It is not known what will be built in the remaining space.

Let's just hope the new building is better looking than the current one!

UPDATE: some commenters were incensed that we condemned the church as being ugly, so we took another long look today. Turns out that it's even uglier than we originally thought! Calling it a visual blight on the neighborhood is being kind. The concrete facade is dingy and dirty, the proportions are horrible, and the brick facing may have seemed like a good idea in the 1960s, but it looks terrible now. Sorry to be so harsh, but the Catholics at NYU deserve a much better building for their masses. WWJD? He'd bulldoze it and build something new.