MBB Architects

New York, New York

This project encompasses restoration and renovation of the church’s interior, exterior and grounds. This historic brownstone icon, the third church building to occupy the site since 1696, was designed by Richard Upjohn in the Gothic Revival style and was constructed between 1839-1846. The building and graveyard are a City, State, and Federal landmark.

The priorities of the project included: enhancing the worship experience, increasing humanism and comfort, enhancing welcoming and creating a more sustainable and resilient building and grounds. In addition, the architects’ mandate was to root the project in historic research and precedence and to put the building on a sustainable path for the next 30 years.

The project includes a wide breadth of intervention, from redesigning the interior aesthetic of the nave to conserving historic ornament to make the entire site accessible. The chancel, the most significant area of the church, required conservation of important artwork and materials as well as reconfiguring to better support worship. The historic stained glass was carefully conserved or restored repairs with historically appropriate recreations.

The exterior site was regraded and paved, re-landscaped with sustainable native plantings, and a new permanent canopy was added to accommodate the Episcopalian procession. A new LED lighting scheme enhances the reading of the church’s architecture at night.

Jury Comments

The sensitivity to this landmark historic building is well done, and the design of the new canopy makes this element virtually disappear, which is amazing. The design is not historicized or passed off as something it isn’t. It’s honest in its interpretation of the church’s original architecture.

Project Team Members

Jeffrey Murphy, FAIA, Partner-in-Charge
Zach Poole, AIA, Project Manager

Project Consultants

Murphy Burnham & Buttrick, Architects
Building Conservation Associates, Restoration Consultant
Liberty Stained Glass Conservation, LLC, Stained Glass Consultant
The Metropolitan Museum of Art, Stained Glass Consultant
AKF Engineers, MEP & FA Engineer
Silman, Structural Engineer
Marrion Fire & Risk Consulting PE, LLC, Fire and Risk Consultant
Langan, Civil/Geotechnical Engineer
Mathews Nielsen Landscape Architects, P.C., Landscape Architect
Shen Milsom & Wilke LLC, Audiovisual / IT Consultant
Melanie Freundlich Lighting Design LLC, Architectural Lighting Consultant
Auerbach Pollock Friedlander, Broadcast Lighting Consultant
William Dailey and Associates, Building and Zoning Consultant
Threshold Acoustics LLC, Acoustical Consultant
Eckersley O’Callaghan & Ptrs, LLC, Structural Glass Engineers
Joan H. Geismar, Ph.D., LLC, Archaeologist
Kirkegaard Acoustic Design LLC, Organ Mechanical/ Acoustic Consultant
Sciame Construction, LLC, Construction Manager


Femenella Associate, Serpentino Stained Glass, Stained Glass
Clagnan Stained Glass Studio, Northeast, Stained Glass
Thomas Denny, Stained Glass
ICC, Integrated Conservation Contracting, Masonry Conservation
EverGreene, Art Conservation
Tatti Art Conservation, Art Conservation
John Tiedemaan, John Canning & Co, Plaster / Finish Restoration
Creative Strauss, Craftekt, Wood Restoration
Rugo Stone, Altar / Mosaic Restoration
Keck Group, Pew Restoration
Seele, New Glass Canopy
Zepsa, New Millwork
GGO Orgelbau GmbH, Pipe Organ Builders
Richards, Fowkes & Co, Pipe Organ Builders
Jonathan Ambrosino, Organ Consultant