A year after the once popular French bistro called it quits in late 2011, it appeared that a brick oven pizza joint would take its place at 195 Smith Street.
In September 2012, the NYC Department Of Buildings approved a permit for a horizontal enlargement at rear to change the three-story, two family building with commercial space to a "four family with commercial space."
Shortly afterwards, a crew began excavating the backyard. Day after day, workers dumped wheel barrel after wheel barrel of dirt into a dumpster. By November, the NYC Department of Buildings Emergency response team issued a violation for work without a permit. Apparently, the proper permits for structural and underpinning work had not yet been obtained.
Several other violations that were issued in early 2013 were dismissed.
Excavation of back yard in late 2012
Work continued all throughout the spring, but rather than to enlarge the building in the rear, it would appear that the roof, rear and side wall of the building have been slowly dismantled.
Rather than working on the extension, it looks as though everything but the front façade are still intact. It all looks rather precarious.
The construction (or rather de-construction) has stopped of late. Several 311 calls seem to have been made to express concern about the structural stability of the building and to report that the gutting had damaged the side wall of number 193 Smith Street. but so far, DOB does not seem concerned and has dismissed the complaints.
Not sure about you, but for the time being, I'll walk on the opposite side of the street.