Big Church Street Building to Get a Major Overhaul

250 ChurchAs expected, change is coming to the big building at 250 Church (between Franklin and Leonard). Remarkably, it’s not getting bigger. Instead, it’s being transformed “into a sleek, amenity-filled workhouse in the hopes of luring young techies and media companies,” says 6sqft. And it’ll get a new address: 101 Franklin. On behalf of new owner Philips International, architects Gensler New York will “shed the 1948 15-story building’s tired beige exterior in exchange for a dapper gray-brick skin. The double-hung windows will be replaced with the multi-pane, factory-sash-style windows that are in line with the structure’s original design, and three double-height sections of the building will be removed to provide outdoor terraces for tenants.” The first two floors will be retail and “the third and fourth floors could be added if a retailer chooses. And the glut deepens….

A few of the renderings are below; there are more at 6sqft. According to the last one, the Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade is heading downtown….

101-Franklin-Street-250-Church-rendering101-Franklin-Street-250-Church-rendering2 101-Franklin-Street-250-Church-rendering4101-Franklin-250-Church-rendering3



  1. Big improvement, and happy to see it is not residential thereby adding more strain on existing schools and amenities.

  2. I guess the HRA offices at 250 Church will be moving to WTC then.

    • In the 6sqft item: “Now that the city’s Human Resources Administration/ Department of Social Services (HRA/DSS) has hightailed it out of the building to consolidate its offices inside 4 World Trade Center […]”

  3. Has ‘workhouse’ been re-purposed to mean something other than semi-correctional housing for the destitute? How long has it been used this way?

    • Exactly. My first thought was that this was just another step in the unwitting march toward a return to Dickensian society.

    • I’ve lived across the street from this building nearly all my life and have always dreamed about what I could do with it, as it was always so clear that it was underutilized but well-located and structurally serviceable. My ideas would have preserved more of the building as it was, however banal, but users will benefit immeasurably from the window configuration. That was the old building’s weakest point. I welcome this. I also welcome Kermit and Spongebob to the neighborhood. Folks I can identify with, at last.

  4. Is the Macy’s Thanksgiving Parade coming to Church Street (that’s what the bottom photo looks like)?

  5. Sponge Bob!

  6. I think “WORKHOUSE” references “NEUEHOUSE” – the membership-based high-end colocation workspace (also for creatives, media types). There’s one in NY and one in LA.

  7. I wonder if the new building will be greener – you know, better insulated, more energy-efficient in general? Maybe that’s the main reason for giving it a new skin. The old look isn’t so bad – very Bauhaus with the alternating slabs of glass and masonry. It can’t be purely aesthetic considerations at play.