Renovation plans for an historic Pearl Street building will be reviewed by the Preservation Board this week. The charming three-story building at 130 Pearl Street has a mixed-use future. Architectural and engineering firm Trautman Associates is converting the upper floors of 130 Pearl Street into 12 apartments with ground floor retail or office space. Trautman purchased the former home of Stewart Title Insurance Company for $660,000 in August 2020.
Built in 1916, 130 Pearl Street currently contains 14,000 sq.ft. of space and is located between the Guaranty Building and the recently-renovated Cathedral Commons building in the Joseph Ellicott Historic District.
From the project application:
The primary use of this 13,996 square foot building will change from office to mixed-use, including twelve residential units and a commercial space at the ground floor. Exterior renovations will include the restoration of the original terra cotta and storefront at street level.
This project is in the process of seeking historic tax credits as part of the funding source. As such, the proposed work has been designed in keeping with the Secretary of the Interior’s standard for rehabilitation.
Details on the Pearl Street façade renovation:
At the primary façade, the second and third floors are highly glazed with the solid portions clad in terra cotta. The terra cotta requires repair throughout as the glazed faces of the units are significantly delaminating from the surface. Previously, a coating had been applied to the surface to address the condition of the terra cotta, but the coating has reached the end of its lifespan and is failing. Several units are also cracked and/or broken. Historically the first floor was also highly glazed with terra cotta cladding above a glazed storefront that ran the full width of the first floor.
Currently the first floor has a largely solid face of green marble with accents of red marble. This marble cladding dates to approximately the 1960s and is in generally good condition. The sides and the rear of the building are executed in a standard red brick with concrete sills at the rear openings.
The brick and concrete are in good to fair condition with some heavy discoloration throughout. At the rear elevation, there are numerous historic openings which have been filled in.
At the primary façade, the existing surface coating will be gently removed from the terra cotta using Prosoco Sure Klean products, and any pressure washing will not exceed 150 PSI. Delaminated surfaces and unsound material will also be removed. Intact spalled units will be treated with Conproco Terra-Color restoration product to restore the lost material and a glazed finish. Any units which are broken and/or damaged beyond repair will be removed and replaced with new terra cotta units replicated to match. A second restoration product, Conproco Terracotta Finish, matte, will then be applied to the entire façade in order to create a uniform finish.
At the first floor, all of the non-historic marble cladding will be removed and a full-width storefront will be restored to the first floor. Above the storefront, new terra cotta cladding will be installed in the location of the historic first floor terra cotta cladding to match the design on the historic drawings.
The project adds to a growing cluster of residential projects on south Pearl Street including the neighboring Cathedral Commons (seven units), 82 Pearl (12 units), 298 Main Street (26 units), One Seneca Lofts (104 units), the future 61 Terrace (148 units) and the upcoming conversion of the Dun Building (23 units).