Transformation Of Smith Street's Ugliest Building Into Mini Fortress Almost Complete
166 Smith Street before and after...The existing two-story, windowless brick building at 166 Smith Street in Boerum Hill, which had been owned and utilized by the Metropolitan Transit Authority for years, was certainly ugly. In late 2011, the MTA sold the property for $3,500,000 to an LLC, which lists developers Steven Haskell and Frank Raccuglia as managing members. Shortly afterwards, Haskell and Raccuglia announced their plans for a 'posh mixed-use building'.
They hired Grasso-Menziuso Architects to fully transform the existing structure into a four-story 8 unit residential building with retail on the ground floor.
Construction started in May 2012 and has progressed quickly. The exterior envelope is now mostly completed.
There is no doubt that the resulting building is an improvement over what was there originally, but I can't help but compare it to a small fortress, complete with crenellated parapet and merlons.
What do you think?
***On a related note, it would appear that Ripco, the commercial real estate firm, has already rented part of the retail space to Lululemon Athletica.
Image and info from Ripco web