The Ugly Side Of Beautiful Brownstone Renovations: More Space For a Few, Tighter Quarters For the Rest
The recent rage for converting multi-family brownstones back to their long lost single-family glory may make architectural historians as pleased as punch, but it also means that such working stiffs are—independent of a trust fund—far less likely to live in one.
Indeed, the prospect of having an entire townhouse to oneself has excited many a wealthy apartment dweller, and such a transformation could even be deemed drool-worthy enough to land a featured slideshow in The Wall Street Journal. But a less than laudatory side effect of each awe-worthy conversion is an immediate loss of housing units: a building that once housed a handful of families now houses only one. Inevitable? Perhaps, but it seems worth at least occasional discussion, or at least mention, in a city where vacancy rates are at all-time lows and apartment prices are at all-time highs. Read More