The consummate Windsor Terrace preservationist has finally met a landmark she didn’t like.
Pat Maliha, the former chairwoman of the Citizens for the Preservation of Windsor Terrace, was nearly decapitated last Thursday when a 36-inch piece of glass fell from a decrepit Park Slope brownstone — formerly home to the legendarily wacky Landmark Pub, at 521 Seventh Ave. — and sliced through the black vinyl top of her 1990 Mazda Miata convertible parked below.
“The glass shard went from the edge of the passenger seat to the edge of the driver seat like gullotine,” said Maliha, who, luckily, was not inside the car at the time of the glass-crash.
“I have fought a lot of building projects over the last two decades,” she said. “This is the first time a building fought back.”
Maliha was inside Tarzian West, a houseware shop across the street, when the plate-glass window exploded out of its third floor window.
“She went outside first,” said shop owner Joanne Tarzian, “and then I ran out, and saw her roof was slit and the glass was in the seat.”
Tarzian said that the accident was just a prelude to the tragedy that could happen if the building, which sits across the street from PS 321, isn’t repaired.
“I don’t walk by it,” she said, “and the kids that go to school at PS 321 shouldn’t either. I’m completely afraid of it.”
Tarzian said that another customer recently complained to her about mortar she saw falling off the corner building.
Maliha estimates it will cost thousands of dollars to replace her slit roof, and the convertible’s console, which was shattered by the falling glass.
“I feel extremely lucky I wasn’t killed,” she said.
The near-tragedy was the latest, and most serious, in a string of mishaps to strike at the vacant former pub at Seventh Avenue and Second Street since the Landmark closed in the late 1990s.
The long-vacant building went on the market last fall for $5.75 million. But according to Realtor Ken Freeman of Massy Knakal, its owner, Dorothy Nash, refused to drop her price which he said was too high for the derelict pre-war pub. He called the building a “disaster.”
“I told her many times I thought the outside of the building was in poor condition,” said Freeman, who gave up on the 10,400-square-foot wreck in October.
Neither Nash, nor the real estate group, A.D. Shaye, which is now leasing the building, responded to repeated phone calls from The Brooklyn Paper.
The Department of Building Web site shows that someone called the city around the time of the convertible-cut with a complaint about falling debris.
The complaint was dismissed after an inspector found sidewalk tunnels around the building and boards over the windows, work that had been done several months earlier.
Kate Lindquist, a spokeswoman for the department, said the city would “continue to re-inspect the building and the sidewalk shed and issue violations when warranted.”
Inspections, however, may not be enough.
Maliha plans to sue the city for failing to secure all the loose, or broken windows.
“The city knew about the danger,” she added. “But it didn’t do enough to protect people.”