A residential project first proposed in 2011 is back. St. Paul’s Episcopal Cathedral is planning to convert its Parish House at 128 Pearl Street into seven apartments. The previous proposal called for 11 units.
The building was reportedly the first fully fireproof building in Buffalo and was designed by E.B. Green and Associates. It was completed in 1896, the same year as the Guaranty Building two doors away.
From the Project Application to the Planning Board:
The proposed action is the conversion of an existing four-story, masonry and framed, Historic structure that was owned by St. Paul’s Episcopal Cathedral into a new 7 unit, multi-family, market rate use (with a leasable commercial office space on the 1st floor). St. Paul’s has sold the building to a for-profit entity that they control. The project is an investment by the church into an underutilized structure on their campus.
There is a small piece of open land to the back of the building in which a metal fire escape is constructed in. The fire escape will remain in effect for Egress and will be repaired, restored, and re-finished. The project has no onsite parking (as allowed by the current Downtown Opportunity Zoning designation, as well as the new Buffalo Unified Development Ordinance).
Since the building is considered eligible for N.P.S. Historic Designation, the project will be following the U.S. Secretary of the Interior Guidelines for Restoration & Rehabilitation. The N.Y.S. and Federal Historic Tax Credit Program will be utilized. N.Y.S. and N.P.S. reviews will be required and approvals obtained in regards to the rehabilitation of the building. All masonry will be restored. Windows will be restored. There are a couple of new proposed window units in the alcove off of the South Elevation that will be Aluminum Clad Wood type.
Schneider Design Architects, P.C. is designing the project.