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408 Greenwich Street Puts on a Big Brown Face

About one year ago the little old brick building on the NW corner of Greenwich and Hubert Streets in Tribeca started coming down. In its place has risen the steel frame for a new and controversial 9-story mixed-use building designed by architect Morris Adjmi. Over the past couple of weekends crews have been craning up some big brown masonry panels and bolting them onto that framework. But what to call it? Ersatz historicalism? Faux contextualism? Or just a damned fine building? No matter. Too many questions.

The pre-cast concrete panels that have gone up over that framework show some of the same over-sized elements as can be found on the ever-so-playful facade of cast iron influences seen on the Scholastic Building at 557 Broadway. Adjmi worked on that one with the late and great Italian architect Aldo Rossi. This one is more sedate. And a fitting neighbor for De Niro and his manholes down the block.

[The Scholastic Building in SoHo: Broadway facade detail (left); Mercer Street facade]

[An early rendering of the 408 Greenwich building from the Adjmi design office]

[How 408 will appear when looking north on Greenwich Street]

[Details: Street level along Hubert Street (left) and the upper floors]

[Adjmi projects at 40 Gansevoort (left) and at 450 W. 14th]

· Rumblings & Bumblings: A Tree Grows on 39th - Tribeca TWOFER [Curbed]
· On Greenwich Street, Second Try No Charm for Proposed Building [Tribeca Trib]
· 408 Greenwich Street [Morris Adjmi website]
· Scholastic, Inc. [Morris Adjmi website]
· DeNiro Shows His Manholes [Curbed]