Erica Tishman, 60, died Tuesday when she was struck by a piece of falling building façade in the heart of Midtown.
The victim was fatally struck around 11 a.m. as she walked along 7th Avenue near W. 49th Street, according to reports. She suffered serious head trauma, according to police, and was pronounced dead on the sidewalk in front of the building located at 152 West 49 Street.
“This is a tragedy, and the family and friends of the victim are in our thoughts. No pedestrian should be at risk from dangerous façade conditions,” the Department of Buildings said in a statement.
The 15-story building at 729 7th Ave. had been cited in April for “failure to maintain exterior building facade and appurtenances,” according to The Daily Mail.
In that citation, building inspectors reportedly wrote that there was “damaged terra cotta at areas above 15th floor in several locations which poses a falling hazard for pedestrians.”
Tishman, a graduate of both Harvard and Princeton universities, was a prominent architect and vice president of property development firm Zubatkin, reports CBS.
Tuesday’s fatal incident occured roughly 500 feet north of the tourist-heavy Times Square, in an area packed with souvenir shops and other retail businesses. Images shared by local media and on Citizen App showed the woman’s body lying under a white sheet, surrounded by a heavy emergency presence and police tape.
The last time a person was killed by falling building debris in New York City was in 2015, when a 2-year-old girl was struck in the head by a brick that fell from an 8th-floor ledge on the Upper West Side.
The Department of Buildings is investigating the incident.