In November, we told you about a plan to bring the stoop back to the residential building at 36 Schermerhorn Street, in Brooklyn Heights. At the time it was clear that the proposal would be approved, but it’s now official after a vote by the Landmarks Preservation Commission on Tuesday.
The four-story structure, located between Clinton Street and Court Street, was built in 1852 and was heavily altered by 1940. That alteration included the removal of the stoop, cornice and parapet, and construction of the somewhat Art Deco-like parapet that is in place today. It fell under the LPC’s jurisdiction in 1965, with the designation of the Brooklyn Heights Historic District, which was the city’s first.
Now, it is going from a four-unit apartment building to a single-family home. Brooklyn-based Elizabeth Roberts Architecture & Design, PC was hired to handle the project. In November, work to reconfigure and extend the rear was approved. Work to restore the front façade was not, due mostly to concerns over materials.
The proposal called for the use of stucco, but the designers hoped that the brick behind the existing façade could be salvaged. Sadly, probes revealed that is not possible, so the originally proposed stucco will be used.
Other aspects of the proposal include an areaway railing, reconstruction of the stoop, enlarged windows and surrounds, construction of a new cornice, a new railing on the roof and reconstruction of the front façade in stucco.
The proposal presented on Tuesday included some changes from November. The railing on the new stoop will be straight and not curved at the bottom and new black iron grills will cover the entirety of the two areaway windows. All of the front windows will be two-over-two instead of four-over-six on the first floor and four-over-four on the second and third floors. Finally, the lintels will better match those at 40 Schermerhorn Street and the design of the new wood cornice has changed slightly, making it taller.
The commissioners had little to say about the changes, and the proposal was approved unanimously.