In early 2016, the Department of Buildings approved the demolition of 355 Grand St., a nearly 200-year-old row house. Now construction has begun on its replacement, a 6-story residential building with ground floor commercial space. Drilling was taking place on the site this morning.
The owner, Jeannie Lai, purchased the property for $4 million. Earlier this year, she secured a $2.2 million construction loan for the project. The architect of record is S. M. Tam, who is based in Brooklyn.
355 Grand St. (also known as 51 Essex St.) was a “contributing building” in the National Register’s Lower East Side historic district. The Federal-style row house was not, however, a city landmark. The Landmarks Preservation Commission ruled that it had undergone too many changes over the decades to be eligible. In December of 2016, local writer Laurie Gwen Shapiro dug into the history of the building for Untapped Cities.