It's been about two years since our last visit to 2301 Front St., a building next to the El that was once the Bromley carpet mill. You may recall, this building sat mostly vacant for many years, though new ownership in 2012 had created some optimism that renovation was on the horizon. When we last checked in on the property, it was indeed under construction, but we weren't entirely clear on what to expect in terms of a final product. Today, we can see that the building has indeed progressed and its future is clearer than ever, but there's still work to be done.
We don't think that anyone would advocate having a parade in honor of the look of this building's renovation. On the one hand, it's great that the owners were able to salvage the building. On the other hand, we can't say we love the gray stucco with the orange stucco racing stripe. But so it goes. Aesthetics aside, the cash checking business that's been operating out of the first floor seems to be continuing along, and a dance studio called Estilo has opened in the rear of the building on the first floor. Upstairs, it appears there were plans for office space, but there's a zoning application that goes before the ZBA at the end of next month to create 28 apartments on the four upper floors of the building. This seems extremely reasonable, but we're not sure what the community had to say on the issue.
You can see, the building is still lacking many windows in the rear, which we'd have to imagine isn't ideal for the dance studio on the first floor. Hardwood floors tend to warp when they get wet, you know? Still, you have to think that windows will happen soon, along with those apartments, and this building, which has long been a source of blight in the neighborhood, will finally provide some real value to the neighborhood.