The former Public School 186 located in Harlem was designed by architect C.B.J. Snyder, Superintendent of School Buildings for the New York City Board of Education, and completed in 1903.Vacated by the school system in the late 1970s, and purchased by the Boys and Girls Club of Harlem in the 1980s, the existing 5-story building has been restored after 40 years of neglect and converted to affordable housing and a new home for the Boys & Girls Club of Harlem.


Despite its deteriorated condition at the start of the project, as a result of Dattner Architects’ sensitive adaptive reuse and restoration, the building was approved by the National Parks Service as a historically significant example of early 20th century school architecture, and is included on the National Register of Historic Places.


The residential portion of this new mixed-income, mixed-use development offers a variety of apartment layouts with modern amenities and shared communal spaces. The restored building exterior and historic features within, such as ornamental staircases and corridors, add to the charm of the residential space. The project is participating in the Enterprise Green Communities program to provide sustainable, affordable homes.


AIA New York Authenticity & Innovation Exhibition
New York Landmarks Conservancy Lucy G. Moses Award
NYCxDesign Honorable Mention
Society of American Registered Architects (SARA) New York Design Award
AIA QUAD State Design Honor Award-Preservation


Oculus Magazine: From Learning to Living

Back to List