Noho, for North of Houston Street, is adjacent to the more famous Soho in lower Manhattan. The neighborhood has a colorful history, starting as a private garden, and later, an elite area developed by the wealthy Astor family.
Noho, roughly triangular-shaped, is bordered by Houston Street (where numbered streets begin) on south, 9th Street on north, Mercer Street on west and Bowery on east. Noho is a small enclave, encompassing only about 15 blocks, but it borders on Cooper Square, home to the prestigious institute Cooper Union for the Advancement of Science and Art, established in 1853. Lafayette Street runs north-south through the heart of Noho. Astor Place, a one-block street, anchors the area with the 6 train station, one of the few subway stops included in the List of Registered Historic Places.
Historical Value Of The Noho Neighborhood
In the 1740s, New York’s first botanical garden was planted near the present-day intersection of Lafayette Street and Astor Place. In 1804, John Jacob Astor purchased the garden site, beginning the Astor family’s long association with Noho. Throughout the 19th century, Noho became home to wealthy aristocrats like the Vanderbilts who constructed fabulous mansions, extensive gardens, and smart retail shops. Buildings still standing from this period include Astor Library and Colonnade Row, an impressive set of landmarked Greek Revival buildings originally constructed as homes in the 1830s.
Today, nearly all of Noho is protected as a historic district by NYC Landmarks Preservation Commission. However, in the early 20th century, before the preservation movement began, many fine homes were demolished and replaced by industrial lofts. As in neighboring Soho, artists of the 1960s were attracted to these large, open, light-filled spaces, and Noho became once again a residential area. Famous artists who lived in Noho were Andy Warhol, Chuck Close, Robert Mapplethorpe, and Jean-Michel Basquiat.
Noho offers a range of housing opportunities, from converted lofts to apartment buildings, to townhomes. The neighborhood is generally upscale, like its neighbor Soho. Rent for a one-bedroom average $3600/month in 2019 according to Renthop, and about $5300 in a doorman building according to NYbits.
Noho is an excellent housing solution for residents who like the charm of Soho and spacious loft living, but prefer to avoid the crowds and commerce. Noho is historic, centrally located, and offers beautiful homes for sale or rent.