251 E 61st

how to make the most of Unique conditions, creating a private urban compound


Location: 251 East 61st Street, New York City

Completion: 2016

Project Size: 5,900 SF

Project Type: Townhouse and Carriage House contemporary restoration, penthouse addition and interior design

Client: Petro Management

Renderings: TRA Studio Architecture

Expediting: TRA Studio

61st Street Urban Compound

This turn of the century four story brick townhouse with an exceedingly rare two story rear carriage house, adjacent to the Treadwell Farms historic district, is curiously, not landmarked.

This provided TRA with the unique opportunity to rethink the complex, creating more efficient, contemporary and sophisticated spaces. The concept was conceived in collaboration with the Developer, Petro Management, and the broker, Robert Morrison, from Douglas Elliman.

Both buildings had lost most of their original details. The townhouse stoop had been removed and the carriage house façade was nothing more than a plywood painted mask.

The project makes the most of the unique conditions, enhancing all of the characteristic that make “townhouse” living desirable, without the downsides inherent to the compact size.

The 18 frame storyboard tells all: the street facade has been transformed with the addition of a canopied entrance, screened by a corten custom gate. From the lobby vestibule, a new wood stair, encased in glass and metalwork, accesses the upper floors as well as the newly excavated basement. The basement houses the needed amenities and also provides a private underground passageway to the coach house.

The underground passageway, punctuated by skylights, allows for the combined as well as the individually separated use of the buildings. It also becomes part of the projects branding.

Both buildings open onto the private court, melting seamlessly the indoor public spaces with the serene open air living room, flanked by the two new facades, animated by thinly framed sliding doors.

Upstairs, in the townhouse, a suite of public spaces revolves around the fireplace wall, soaring 20 feet high. Further up, the numerous bedrooms include the Master bedroom rooftop glass addition.

The coach house functions completely independently with its own kitchen and dining room, living room illuminated by a large skylight, and complete Master Bedroom suite.

TRA studio has been instrumental in collaborating with the client, working essentially in a shared project management capacity. TRA has been responsible for preparing and continuously updating the project schedule and preparing shop drawings. TRA also developed the marketing renderings, which not only illustrate the design to a potential buyer, but also were instrumental in developing the construction details.


In Progress