It is not uncommon to hear people say homes in this condition should be torn down. Hopefully, seeing makeovers like this changes their minds. This quaint rowhouse on Chambers Street has been restored and dedicated to a new family by Habitat for Humanity. The dramatic changes made are revitalizing Chambers one house at a time. The building across the street is an excellent candidate.
Homes don’t have to be decrepit, vacant or blighted to see a dramatic makeover. Some just need maintenance or restoration from attempts to “modernize” them over the years. Such is the case with this home in the Heights section of Newburgh. The owners really had their heart set on a brick home, but they loved the view from this frame house.
When they began to remove the aluminum siding, they were thrilled to discover fishscale and clapboard underneath. The siding had retained water and at least 50% of the wood needed replacing.
The porch had rotted away and needed to be rebuilt. Water had softened the structural beams which is part of the unexpected surprises of renovating an old home. The contractor and owners also paid careful attention to restoring the architectural balance of the house by opening and changing windows that had been covered (sometimes to retain heat).
The exterior has been fully restored. It makes the neighborhood so much more attractive and not only adds value to the home, but that of the neighbors. The Heights has been seeing a steady influx of new residents and families who are restoring homes. There are many more for the avid old home lover.
Although there are many distressed buildings in Newburgh, there are plenty that have been restored and rehabilitated over the years. It can be easy to forget or to overlook these buildings. This is a wonderful and dramatic reminder of what 107 Liberty Street used to look like. Local business woman and owner, Stacie Laskin, bought the property from the city of Newburgh. The entire building was gutted to make 2 spacious apartments and a proper storefront that she now uses as an office. Stacie also removed the white paint from the facade and rebuilt the bay windows that were rotting.
Buildings like this look all too familiar. Some people say they should just be torn down, but the “after” photo below shows how valuable and irreplaceable Newburgh architecture is. There are many more buildings on Liberty Street just waiting for their turn to be brought back to life.
These bricked up façades are a dime a dozen in Newburgh. They were once storefronts with cast iron columns and window displays that were later on converted into apartments. From a preservation standpoint, these conversions could almost be seen as a savior for some of these buildings. Adaptation for a new purpose is what has kept these properties viable. When Newburgh lost its industries, it lost its small business owners as well. Slowly, some of these spaces are being converted back to their original purpose, like this one at 13 Chambers Street, a former funeral home. The windows were removed and the original cast iron columns were sandwiched into brick infill. Architect, Jeff Wilkinson was able to design a new storefront for his future office. The new façade is attractive and transparent, which is known to increase walkabilty.
Imagine if all the bricked-over storefronts in Newburgh could be converted back to actual stores? See below for the way the building looks now, as well as office and residential opportunities.
The Ground Floor is set up as 3 suites. Architect, Jeff Wilkinson will be taking the front section. The other 2 suites are available for tenants. Anyone interested can contact Jeff Wilkinson at: 845-838-9763, jawil[at]earthlink.net
Also available below is the 2nd floor 2 bedroom apartment that includes a separate den which would make a nice home office. Price is $1050 per month plus utilities. Contact Madeline Fletcher at the NCLB for more details.
Newburgh has amazing century-old architecture. It also has other great features like the century-old bluestone sidewalks. Unfortunately in many locations they have been removed or are in poor condition. Architect, Drew Kartiganer, just finished repairing and restoring the sidewalk in front of 238 and 240 Liberty Street. The project was possible through the sidewalk replacement grant through the City of Newburgh. Mr. Kartiganer says the sidewalk repair cost over $12,000 and would not have been possible without the grant.
They replaced about 40% of the bluestones and reset about 90% of the front walk on the street by removing the stones and old base. Afterwards, a 3″ to 4″ sand base was compacted and stones were cut to fit as required. They then reset the stones. Cobblestones details were added to define planters near the trees. Mr. Kartiganer says, “The sidewalk was uneven before we started, to say the least, with a lot of dips, cracks and grass growing up in the cracks. You can now walk on it without looking down, which is unusual where the bluestones are located in the historic district.”
Thank you for helping to maintain the character that makes Newburgh special. For the full scope of the work that was done, see the photos below.
75 Liberty got an extreme makeover over the past months. It was on the market last year and since then has been bought up by an investor who has rehabbed the building. I had the chance to speak to one of the workers and he said the owner was doing “quality work” on the building. They went before the ARC for for paint colors and windows. The final result is much cleaner and fresh. It is still going to remain a 4 family rental when this easily could’ve been used for just one family, or at most 2. So it goes in Newburgh. Overall, it is good to see that the building is being maintained.