Checking in on a Chester Avenue Project That Tries to Fit In

A recent commenter led us back to an interesting project which combined a surprisingly large number of units (twenty-four) with architecture that was meant to mesh with the neighboring structure. The building of interest is at 4213 Chester Ave.– we first mentioned the property last year when the dilapidated twin house that was there had been demolished to make way for new development. Since the parcel itself was so large, it allowed for a larger than expected replacement structure. At that time, Harman Deutsch, the architect for this project, reached out to us and provided an applause-worthy rendering. 

The original sad twin that was torn down

The rendering of the new building

On our most recent visit, we saw that the project was completely finished and the building even looks occupied at this point. You can't tell from the picture but the building is huge and stretches very far back. It includes a common roof deck and some of the units have balconies. If this sounds convincing enough to pique your interest, you'll have try again next year because all the units are completely rented for the coming year. In the meantime, you can see the project website here.

Current view

In terms of the curb appeal, the building looks very similar to the rendering but with some changes. The most obvious is that the gray color scheme of the new construction does not match the older building's brown stone. There is a white buffer zone in the middle of the building that ostensibly helps the two sides interact with each other. A few windows and front porch arches are also missing along with a few other changes. That said, we think the building manages to fit in fairly well with the surrounding block. What do you think?

From across the street

Existing houses across the street with beautiful gardens in the front yards

While on block, we managed to check in on the construction progress at the corner of 42nd & Chester. Last summer, a former deli collapsed due to the construction activity next door. That now empty parcel is fenced in and the next-door parcels are built out and looking for tenants despite the continuing presence of fences out front. The prices are $1500 for a 2 bedroom and $2400 for a 4 bedroom.

Less impressive construction down the block

As to what the deal is with that corner lot, we have no idea. No permits have been pulled and no other recent records are available online. When something eventually does happen, let's hope for a building that looks more like the first project we covered and not as much like the adjacent properties.