Project's Summary

Westwood architect William J. Martin, R.A., AIA, from WJM Architect, is set to receive the prestigious 2008 Historic Preservation Commendation Award in May. The award will be presented by the Bergen County Historic Preservation Advisory Board, recognizing Martin's exceptional work on the alteration redesign of the Parian Jewelers Building, now housing The First National Bank of Westwood. This year marks the building's centenary, further highlighting the significance of this commendation.

Martin collaborated closely with owners Mike Viola and Roy Parian to ensure the success of the project. Speaking on the collaboration, Martin praised the owners' attitude and commitment, which played a crucial role in achieving the desired outcome. The county award letter specifically commended the redesign as an outstanding example of historic preservation, showcasing its historical sensitivity.

The project stands out for its seamless blend of traditional and modern materials, resulting in an energy-efficient and environmentally conscious design. Importantly, this was achieved without compromising the integrity of the original structure, successfully meeting both aesthetic and functional goals.

The Board's decision to recognize this project was based on its meticulous efforts to preserve and protect a building that holds immense historical significance for Westwood, the Pascack Valley, and Bergen County. It serves as a testament to the region's commercial history during its transition from an agricultural-based economy to one of greater diversity.

This commendation marks the fourth award received by Architect Martin within the past eight years. Previous accolades include the Bogert Built Furniture Office Building, also located in Westwood, and the Pascack Historical Society Museum in Park Ridge. The Awards Program ceremony will take place on Thursday evening, May 8, 2008, at 6:30 pm at Hackensack's historic Church on the Green, where County Executive Dennis McNerney and the Board of Chosen Freeholders will present the commendation.

In summary, the redesign of the Parian Jewelers Building, undertaken by WJM Architect and led by William J. Martin, has been recognized with the prestigious 2008 Historic Preservation Commendation Award. The sympathetic alteration of this historic building showcases Martin's exceptional architectural expertise and highlights the rich commercial history of Westwood, the Pascack Valley, and Bergen County. The commendation ceremony will be a momentous occasion, celebrating the successful preservation of an iconic structure that has stood the test of time.

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