Saturday, November 26, 2016

Gellert Gallery Revisited

Six years ago, in November 2010, Gossips published an inventory of all the buildings owned by Phil Gellert, the emperor of the notorious (in Hudson. at least) Northern Empire. At that time, there were twenty, and one of them was 718-720 Union Street.

The proposal to demolish 718-720 Union Street, presented recently to the Historic Preservation Commission by the person who intends to buy the building, inspired Gossips to revisit some of the other properties that have in the past six years passed out of Gellert ownership.

The first is 408-410 Warren Street. This building gained some notoriety back in 2011 when a dropped ceiling fell, sending occupants of the apartment below to the hospital.

In  2013, new owners of the building, the proprietors of White Whale, stripped away the plywood and other weirdness obscuring the building's intended design and restored the storefront to its original glory.

Another building that is finding new life after Gellert ownership is 102-104 North Fifth Street, the house that was, from 1893 until 1900, the original Hudson City Hospital.

In August 2015, the house was purchased from Gellert by Kamal Elmasri, who is now completing a remarkable restoration of the historic house.

Another property that has moved out of Gellert ownership and is on its way to better things is 449-451 State Street.

This poor, sad double house was purchased from Gellert at the beginning of 2015 by someone who cleaned up the interior and got it ready for resale.

Now it seems the building has been sold again, and the hope is that the new owner will restore it to its original design, before those dreadful "picture windows" were installed on the first floor. Some guidance in what was meant to be may be found in the background of this picture.

As  far as the rest of the Gellert Gallery is concerned, several of the buildings are currently for sale, notably 432 Warren Street, 221-225 Allen Street, and 29 Eighth Street, all deserving, in Gossips opinion, rescue and restoration.

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