Paper Factory

About this project

Located on West 22nd Street in the Ladies’ Mile Historic District, this 9,300 sf, 6-story residential condominium building is an Italianate style rowhouse that was originally built in 1851 as a single family residence and then used subsequently as a storage facility for a paper company. During this period a fire escape was added to support the commercial use. In the 1950’s, a fire inflicted significant damage to the interior of the building, and the poorly executed repairs and neglect since had left the building unsafe for occupancy for several years prior to ABA’s work. Much of the storefront infill was missing, and the stoop and railings were in poor condition. The entire brownstone facade was painted red. All window openings were blocked up, the wood storefront display bay was badly deteriorated, and the brownstone lintels and facade stones were spalling.

ABA undertook a full restoration of the street facade, and designed a return to the original residential program. The work included removal of the non-historic fire escape and repair of the exterior details that were damaged by fire and neglect to duplicate the original historic conditions. As is typical for our significant restoration projects, the preserved historic elements undertook a paint analysis to determine the original colors applied to wood elements, windows, and storefront infill during the nineteenth century, and the colors were restored. The interior was redesigned, including replacement of all floor assemblies throughout, to stabilize and restore the building to its original residential use. Removal of portions of the rear of the building without affecting the historic fabric allowed the design to meet modern codes, creating terraces with exterior fireplaces which now serve as personal outdoor spaces as well as a way of bringing more natural light to the interiors. A penthouse rooftop addition carefully ensures the integrity of the historic massing within the historic district context by being not visible from any public thoroughfare. The Paper Factory project has been met with enthusiasm by the Community Board and the NYC Landmarks Preservation Commission, and lauded for the effort displayed in restoring the building to its original historic character.

Date:  November 12, 2007
Skills:  Enlargements, Residential, Restorations