New renderings have been released for a proposed facade modification of the historic Restoration Hardware building at 9-19 Ninth Avenue. These images have been included in part of a proposal package submitted to the Landmarks Preservation Commission, and will be reviewed by the LPC later today. The Aurora Capital Associates owned site, in the heart of the Meatpacking District, currently features a steel screen-wall facade with art glass on the upper floors of the brick building. The new design, by Backen Gillam Kroeger Architects, is looking to bring a more symmetrical look to the structure through the renovation.
The updated exterior would be put into place while retaining the building’s structural brackets where the current facade is attached. Being a much simpler design with clean lines, the proposal consists of a black-painted crossed-aluminum frame.
Going off of these cues, the glass underneath the facade on the building’s fourth floor will be replaced with vision glass to match the rest of the site. The existing vertical mullions on the structure’s ground floor storefront, third, and fourth floors will also be capped with extruding aluminum. Extant historic brick walls will remain untouched with the re-design.
The 60,000 square foot retail space was leased to Restoration Hardware for 15 years, worth a reported $250 million. The site gained controversial notoriety in 2015 due to the accidental death of a 22-year-old construction worker. Harco Construction, the contractor of the site, was convicted of manslaughter, criminally negligent homicide, and reckless endangerment in New York State Supreme Court for the role which it played in the worker’s death.
Construction on the warehouse site was almost halted because of zoning laws which prohibit the construction of retail sites larger than 10,000 square feet. Restoration Hardware eventually prevailed, with the DOB giving its approval as they argued that the site was an interior design business, which is permitted at that size.