The Former Robin Des Bois at 195 Smith Street back in 2011
Construction Work begins in 2012
Construction continues in May 2013
Still Sisters: 193 and 195 Smith Street in January 2014
Reconfiguration of inside walls.
Notice metal studs across windows.
195 Smith Street as it looks now
In 2012, it looked as though a brick oven pizza place was going to move in, but that never happened, By September of that year, 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 barrow after wheel barrow of dirt into a dumpster. By November, the NYC Department of Buildings Emergency response team issued a violation for work without a permit.
Eventually, it was lifted and work progressed slowly.
Then earlier this year, a reader commented that it seemed strange that metal studs had been installed in the middle of the windows, suggesting that the inside of the building was being reconfigured in a way that would make it necessary to redo the façade.
Sure enough, a few days later, a scaffolding and netting went up and work on the front of the building began.
Well, the scaffolding just came down to reveal a very changed building.
Gone is the cornice, gone are the old beige bricks and the detail around the windows.
195 Smith Street looked exactly like its sister building next door at number 193. Now it just looks like an ugly brick box.
It makes me rather sad.