The Residences at PS 186

Organization Name: Alembic Community Development |Boys and Girls Club of Harlem | Monadnock Development, LLC

Project Title: The Residences at PS 186

Project Location: Harlem, NY

Project Goals:

  • To restore and preserve PS 186, a historically significant piece of architecture, a central fixture of West 145th Street’s landscape, and a beautiful building which had fallen into disrepair after decades of neglect.

  • To provide 78 affordable apartments for very low and moderate income residents that contribute to the neighborhood’s rejuvenation, while also providing much needed affordable housing.

  • To provide a permanent home and state-of-the-art clubhouse for the Boys and Girls Club of Harlem (BGCH) to further its mission of providing access and opportunities for youth to reach their full potential as responsible members of the community.


Project Description:
The Residences at PS 186 preserves and brings new life to a former school by providing affordable housing and a permanent location for the BGCH. The development team has worked hard to be respectful of the building’s unique architectural and design features while creating state of the art apartments and a modern home for the BGCH. The exterior of the building is being restored with original details and historically correct windows and cornices; and the interior is being adapted to its new uses while incorporating many of the character-defining features, such as the original H-shaped corridors, 14-foot ceilings, ornamental stairs, and wood trim. There will be studios, 1 and 2 bedroom units available for families in a wide variety of apartment layouts, with some unique loft type apartments on one floor. All units will be affordable for very low to moderate income households.

Community Impact:
This project will have an immediate impact on West 145th and 146th Streets and the surrounding community. The renovation of this building eliminates blight that had existed in the community for over 30 years—the building had fallen into such a state of disrepair and neglect that there were numerous safety risks, widespread vandalism, and even trees growing out of the windows of the building. The project also provides 78 much-needed units of affordable housing to the neighborhood. It will also provide BGCH of Harlem with a permanent home where they can provide state of the art recreation and programs for the over 1,500 children within the Harlem community it serves. The project will be ready for occupancy in June 2016 and will exert a positive center of gravity for life on West 145th Street, serving the young people of the community, and the community of residents who will move in.

Organization Description:
Alembic Community Development was founded in 1988 as a consulting firm. Through its real estate development work it plans, finances and builds affordable and supportive housing and community facilities in collaboration with nonprofit organizations and residents in New York, Louisiana and Mississippi. Boys & Girls Club of Harlem was founded in 1980 by the Convent Avenue Baptist Church. The BGCH offers a broad range of programs in five core areas: Character and Leadership Development, Education and Career Development, Health and Life Skills, The Arts and Sports, Fitness and Recreation and serves approximately 1,500 at risk boys and girls. Monadnock Development, LLC was founded in 2009 and functions as the real estate development arm of Monadnock Construction, Inc., a general contractor based in Brooklyn. Monadnock Development has closed financing on 18 projects (including My Micro NY & Hunters Point South) representing more than 2,500 units and $841 million total development costs.

    The new view from West 145th Street

    West 146th St entrance to The Residences at PS 186

    Neglected until ‘14, it is becoming a positive hub

    The Boys & Girls Club’s new clubhouse lobby