With Redevelopment Stalled, Provident Loan Society Building Hits Market for $20M

Posted on: July 30th, 2018 at 4:34 am by

The bank is for sale.

Despite the city’s approval of redevelopment last December, the Provident Loan Society building on East Houston Street is now on the chopping block. Longtime owners Elsa and Dunnie Lai, who purchased the centenary structure nearly thirty years ago, are now looking to sell. Price sought for the non-landmarked landmark is a hefty $20 million.

Cushman & Wakefield is the brokerage of record, and currently advertises the property as a “prime development opportunity.” And calls attention to those plans as opportunity in its marketing materials.

Indeed, its placement on the open market follows roughly eight months after the Department of Buildings approved the years-in-the-making proposal for a mixed-use, twelve-story protrusion from 225 East Houston. This despite prior grassroots support to urge protection of the century-old structure, and secure the ever-elusive landmark designation.

Rendering by Rogers Partners Architects

The approved layout, as it stands, calls for 38 rental apartments, plus several recreational terraces and fitness rooms for tenants, all spread across more than 35,000 square-feet of floor area. There is also bicycle storage with twelve spaces and commercial retail, presumably on the ground floor (6,800 square-feet). Floors eight through twelve cantilever over the Mercury Lounge, made possible thanks to the acquisition of 9,238 square-feet of air rights from that property, as first reported here in January 2015.

The Provident Loan Society financial institution erected the Classical Revival-style building in 1912. It’s apparently the most intact of the dozen remaining former bank branches dotting the city. During its latter years, the building was the residence-studio of Jasper Johns (whose work inspired the renderings) and a string of clubs including Manhattan Gentlemen’s Club (strip club), a goth nightclub known as Chaos, The Bank, and Element.

Recent Stories

Late Photographer Corky Lee Gets Mural Treatment on Doyers Street

There is a new tribute mural in Chinatown that honors the memory of beloved photographer Corky Lee. The nascent Chinatown Mural Project is behind the new artwork, which stretches along a 35-foot wall on Doyers Street, the nerve center of Chinatown. The mural is two-toned – blue and off-white – and meant to resemble “Ming” […]

One Year Later, ‘Fiore Escape’ COVID Sessions Still Captivate

One year after first captivating passersby at Essex and Grand Streets, the free fire escape concert series is back for another. Indeed, musician Jill Fiore will perform anew from the second floor of her Essex Street tenement (above Delancey Car Service). The next so-called “Fiore Escape” show is slated for October 15, as announced on […]

Parks Department Installs Fence at Allen Mall Bathhouse in Response to Nadja Rose Madder

The Parks Department is upping the ante on deterring a homeless artist from painting and gathering at the Allen Street Bathhouse. Earlier this week, the city began assembling an eight-foot chain-link enclosure to (partially) fence in the sidewalk plaza. It is on this spot that transgender artist Nadja Rose Madder has been transforming the brickwork […]

Extell Residents in Cherry Street Tower Bark Foul Over Abundance of Dogs Despite No Pet Policy

Residents of Extell’s “affordable tower” at 227 Cherry Street are barking foul over the proliferation of pitbulls, despite the no-pet policy. We are told by current tenants that leases contain a strict stipulation prohibiting pets in apartments, and that management (Wavecrest) seems deaf and/or slow to act about the apparent violations. By some estimates, there […]

Aggro Panhandler Hurls Brick at Pickle Guys Worker in Brutal Attack

An aggro panhandler outside Pickle Guys on Grand Street attacked an employee after he was asked to move away from the store entrance, cops said. The suspect had been aggressively begging at around 8:20am last Wednesday when the 63-year-old worker told him to disperse. That didn’t sit well; the pugilist picked up a nearby chair […]