I thought the same thing when I saw these photos.
I love the depth that they've given the facade. Nothing ticky-tack here. And note how the exterior brickwork extends into the apartments. That's a beautiful, extravagant touch.
The CURBED report on 414 ...
$5M Gets a Piece of Tribeca Twins, Soap Included
January 7, 2008
Some changes afoot down on Washington Street in Tribeca, where
twin condo developments are rising between Vestry and Laight Streets.
At 414 Washington, the smaller of the two look-a-likes has now been
officially christened the Pearline Soap Factory after, yes, a soap factory
that covered this site back in the 1800s.
The developers have launched a website, declaring "9 exclusive residences
in the 5 millions", where the use of lower case lettering somehow makes
that hefty price tag seem like something a little bit less. One thing is pretty
clear. Somebody is going to clean up on this one.
Another change: Word on the street is that someone who used to garner
great respect is now pretty much washed up. And Karl Fischer Architect
has taken over from Joseph Pell Lombardi, as shown in DOB documents
wherein the owner has respectfully requested that Fischer "SUPPERCEDE THE
APPLICNT", thereby dumping the original architect on this project. Further
changes indicate that, where the plan once offered 15 units, the building is
now being carved up into 9 larger units, measuring about 3,000 sf each.
Hence the "5 millions" starting price. As of yet the Pearline website isn't
showing floorplan porn or any delicious details. Just some jazzy tunes and
one of those annoying end-pages, with the ubiquitous order for readers to "Submit."
An old ad for selling the soap which was once made on this site.
The new building has contextual arched windows and barrel vaulted ceilings.
How times have changed: From 5 cent soap to a home for a mere 5 million.
· New Tribeca Lofts Look a Lot Like Old Tribeca Lofts [Curbed]
· Pearline Soap Factory website [pearline lofts.com]
· Application Data 78 Laight / 414 Washington [NYC Dept. of Buildings website]
The website has been updated with Floorplans and lots of images ...
And now they are saying 7 Units (instead of 9), still "in the 5 Millions" ...
3000 sf / 3 BRs
Living / Dining Room @ 52' x 26'
Surprisingly no fireplaces.
But PH has the Full Roof
The brickwork at 415 is essentially the same as 414, so I wondered why they chose to set the windows almost flush in the openings. Doesn't look right.
Looks like someone screwed up, and the error is being corrected. Note the two lower right windows compared to the others.
A little detail that makes a big difference.
These buildings are amazing.
A few months ago, I was walking by the site and overheard an absurd conversation from two idiots who called these buildings "monstrosities."
An update on 415 Washington - the Fairchild & Foster Atelier -- from today at CURBED :
415 Washington, From Chemists to Condos
Looking to the southeast from the corner of Washington and Vestry.
The corner of Vestry and Washington on the far edge of Tribeca has been
through some big changes since we posted a little not-so-welcome sign back
in the winter of '07. One welcome change was the cancellation of the contracts
called in on the crew of developers who showed up a couple of years back
with some big condo plans, both for this former parking lot at 415 Washington /
55 Vestry and its fancy little twin across the street at 414 Washington.
Now architect Karl Fischer has taken the helm at 415 Washington and all
is quiet on these cobbled streets, save for the din of construction as
buildings go up on every available corner and underbuilt block.
The original rendering for the project from the office of architect Joseph Pell Lombardi.
These 9-stories, newly constructed from the ground up, have been
dubbed the Fairchild and Foster Atelier, a darned fancy name in memory
of a company of chemists who, by digging into the lining of pigs stomachs,
produced digestive enzymes and other anti-dyspeptics at their
manufacturing plant here. Foster died on site back in 1938 and some
time after that the 415-423 Washington Street building went up in flames.
Bad luck then led to bad luck later: the new 21-unit development has had
more than its share of design and zoning snags, but now it seems the
negatives are all in the past. No news yet on sales or marketing, but the
red bricks are up and the big windows are in. With some luck the
completion date could be right around the corner.
The west facade of the near-complete development at 415 Washington.
Zoning map, showing both the 414 (bottom) and 415 Washington (top) sites.
Looking north along Washington Street.
The Vestry Street facade as it meets up with its older neighbor at 49 Vestry.
Raised steel ramps being installed along Washington Street.
One of the many digestive products from chemists Fairchild Bros. & Foster.
Detail from an old letter opener, a marketing tool from Fairchild & Foster.
A bookful of remedies.
Fairchild and Foster's list of available concoctions.
News of Fairchild and Foster at the Chicago World's Fair and Exhibition of 1898
Sales pitch for Fairchild's "positively superior" brand of Pepsin.
Old Fairchild bottles for "Pepsencia" (L.) and "Panopepton" (R.).
The story of a previous occupant of this site, one James F. Hind.
· 49 Vestry to Everyone: "Vamoose!" [Curbed]
· $5M Gets a Piece of Tribeca Twins, Soap Included [Curbed]
· Tribeca Warehouse to Get Heavy Metal-Loving Twin Brother? [Curbed]
· Wholesale Druggists: Fairchild Bros. & Foster [bottlebooks.com]
Condo project defied Landmarks
approval, architect admits
By Julie Shapiro
The developers of a new condo building in North Tribeca recently discovered that details matter.
That is especially true when the building, in this case the 21-unit Fairchild at 415 Washington St., was designed in painstaking consultation with the community and the city Landmarks Preservation Commission. The Fairchild falls into the Tribeca North Historic District, which means the L.P.C. has final say over matters as basic as height and as detailed as the cornice design.
As the Fairchild grew closer to completion over the last year, it became clear that the developers had not followed the blueprint approved by the L.P.C. A very visible elevator bulkhead looms several feet higher than it should. The windows are casements, not double-hung, and the cornice does not have the approved detailing.
“It’s very upsetting,” said Roger Byrom, chairperson of Community Board 1’s Landmarks Committee, which had an advisory role in approving the designs back in 2006. “I just wish developers would have the decency and the ethics to build what is allowed.”
But placing the blame in this case is not a simple matter, because the architect for the project switched in the middle. Joseph Pell Lombardi designed the building and shepherded it through the approvals process, including landmarks approval, but architect Karl Fischer took over shortly after construction began.
The Fairchild, now commonly referred to by the address 55 Vestry St., is owned by a group of investors, which is led by Gerard Longo and includes the actor James Gandolfini.
When Fischer took over about two years ago, the investors assured him that the project had its approvals in place and all he had to do was continue in accordance with those approved plans, he said. But while the L.P.C. had approved an earlier version of Lombardi’s design, Lombardi later changed the designs based on recommendations from the Board of Standards and Appeals, where Lombardi received a variance to allow residential use in a manufacturing zone, Fischer said. Lombardi never returned to the L.P.C. after making those design changes, Fischer said.
Lombardi spoke to the Downtown Express from France and did not have project documents in front of him, so he could not recall many details. He said he never designed a tall bulkhead for the building, so that addition must have come after he left the project. And he added that no matter what happened before Fischer took over, once Fischer started on the project he should have made sure all the approvals were in order before continuing to build it.
“It didn’t fall through the cracks on me,” Lombardi said.
Fischer said he didn’t look into the building’s approvals earlier because of the investors’ assurances. Fischer later said he wasn’t blaming Lombardi, but there were likely a series of miscommunications. Once Fischer realized the L.P.C. hadn’t approved the final designs of the building, it took him several months to track down exactly which version L.P.C. did approve, since there were so many iterations of the project, he said.
Fischer called the design discrepancies “minor.”
“The building very closely resembles what L.P.C. approved,” Fischer said. “To the ordinary layman, there would be very little difference.”
But Byrom, from the community board, has a problem with any developer who flouts the rules and wants the Fairchild’s owners to restore the building to the originally approved designs.
“We do not want to encourage developers to break the law,” Byrom said.
Fischer said the project’s investors realize they “should have been more attentive” to the details. A spokesperson for Longo, the principal developer of the building, did not comment.
Fischer has offered to make changes to the building’s cornice but said it would be nearly impossible to alter the elevator bulkhead now that it’s built.
The L.P.C. will hear the case next month and can either order Fischer to make changes or allow the building to stay as is. The L.P.C. also has to decide on a cooling tower, which has not yet been built but is designed to be more visible than the tower L.P.C. approved.
The Fairchild sits across the street from the Pearline Soap Factory at 414 Washington St., a new seven-condo building from the same architects and development group. The Pearline also had a couple landmarks problems, but they were smaller, related only to the cornice and windowsills, and the L.P.C. voted last week not to force the owners to make any changes.
Downtown Express is published by Community Media LLC
Since LPC forced a nearby Tribeca developer to totally deconstruct and rebuild a non-compliant PH addition I can't see why they'd now allow a non-compliant elevator bulkhead -- except for the fact of the current state of the economy.
No consistency. LPC allowed the PH atop the Greenwich Hotel, which is a greater deviation from the approved design.
If you want to make a point to stop the behavior, you have to enforce a penalty every time.