Most development on the Northside of Williamsburg consists of glassy new buildings, but every once in a while, someone converts a pre-war structure instead of tearing it down. Today, YIMBY has a look at 119-123 Kent Avenue, where three century-old townhouses will expand and get a new, brick facade that stretches across all of them.
The four-story buildings will expand in the back, but the number of apartments—18—will remain the same. Rent-stabilized tenants have held on in two apartments, according to the Commercial Observer, which reported on the sale of the properties in January. Many of the original window frames are arched, and some of the new windows will replicate that style. And the building on the corner of North 7th Street and Kent Avenue will get big, factory-style windows that let in much more light than the narrow, prewar ones.
The exterior will be re-clad with a new, lighter brick, and the cornices, which are decrepit or missing entirely, will be replaced by a modern, metal one. The ground floor retail will grow to 5,625 square feet.
Cheskie Weisz and Joel Wertzberger are co-developing the project, and Input Creative Studio is designing it. Construction is set to wrap in the next three months, according to the architects.
Longtime owner Anthony Fernicola tried to develop the site a few years ago, and YIMBY revealed renderings for a new building planned there back in 2014. Scaffolding went up in 2013, but work didn’t progress much until the new developers took over in January.
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