Henry Street Settlement is announcing today that it has completed the purchase of a former firehouse at 269 Henry St. The three-story building, located next door to the social service organization’s headquarters, will eventually be home to Henry Street’s local resource center and parent center.
The property was transferred from the city yesterday, after Henry Street Settlement paid $1. Back in 2014, we told you about renovation plans for the 143-year-old building, which were expected to cost $5.5 million. The facility will become a kind-of “front door” for the organization, one of the oldest and largest non-profit institutions in New York. Henry Street has been working to acquire the building for more than a decade.
The firehouse was closed following the September 11th, 2001 terrorist attacks. Engine Company 15, which operated from the building, was moved to Pitt Street. The new facility will be named the Dale Jones Burch Neighborhood Center at Henry Street Settlement. Renovations are being made possible by the Burch Foundation, along with other donors.
The new space will be handicapped (and stroller) accessible. Community members will be able to access free legal and financial counseling, benefits screening and enrollment in food stamps and affordable health insurance. It’s also where Henry Street will offer its parenting workshops and classes.
“We are eagerly anticipating this critical addition to the Settlement,” said Henry Street Settlement Executive Director David Garza. “Traditionally an anchor for the community, the firehouse will again play the role of ‘first responder’ for families in crisis – this time ADA-compliant and accessible to all.”
The center is expected to open in the year 2020. The renovation is being overseen by the architectural firm, Beyer Blinder Belle. Next year, Henry Street Settlement will celebrate its 125th anniversary.