54 MacDougal demo intro UPDATE 7/30: The historic building will be replaced by a new five-story, four-unit residential project, according to this permit filed July 29th.

Scaffolding is up and demolition is going down at 54 MacDougal Street, a nearly 200-year-old South Village property.

The three-story red brick house was built in 1820 and appeared in the 1997 movie Men in Black as a vintage jewelry store operated by an alien.
The tiny structure was once part of the Richmond Hill estate owned by US Vice President Aaron Burr, who had that infamous duel with Alexander Hamilton.

Demolition started in full force July 17th, according to this Department of Buildings filing. No DoB permits yet for what would replace the structure.

Ajax Investment Partners LLC bought the building in October 2012, The Wall Street Journal reported. Ajax’s Warren Horowitz told the Journal in March that there were no immediate plans for the vacant brick house: “I respect the fabric of the neighborhood, but ultimately, research says it is an old building on a quiet SoHo street,” he said. “There is no mystery or secret plan, but I am exploring the options that are available for the property.”

We strolled by the demolition site this morning and took photos:

54 MacDougal demo 1

54 MacDougal demo 2

Here’s a photo of the house before demolition, courtesy of Greenwich Village Society for Historic Preservation:

54 MacDougal GVSHP

Photo: GVSHP

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