The townhouse at 471 West End Avenue may look rather unremarkable—it has faded bricks and boarded-up windows, the results of a huge 2013 fire that ripped through the building—but it has quite the architectural pedigree. The home, you see, is a McKim, Mead & White creation, built around 1886 and part of the firm’s practice of designing smaller buildings "to render services to friends or clients or just to pay the rent," according to a 2003 New York Times piece. Now, the building is on the market and will be delivered as-is to a buyer for $9.975 million.
Here’s the brokerbabble:
It represents a once in a lifetime opportunity for a buyer to write the next chapter in this significant property’s history by restoring its facade and developing a large custom home inside as a single or multi-family townhouse.
Most recently, the house was divided into eight apartments, but it was originally conceived as a single-family townhouse. The Times piece cited above refers to the house as "the runt of the litter" when compared to its next-door neighbors on West 83rd Street, but singles out its "quite unusual" brick facade, along with a "checkerboard band across the fourth floor, and Florentine arches on the entry level." But some of its current features—a Mansard roof, for example—were added after the fact, according to the Times.
The building is part of the Riverside-West End Historic District, and though the listing claims it could be expanded, changes would be subject to LPC approval. Still, for the right buyer—a Stanford White-obsessed millionaire, perhaps?—it could be a nifty little investment.