Former Convent To Make Room For Condos

February 11, 2016, By Markeshia Ricks - "A former home to Catholic nuns in Westville could become a home to “new urbanites” looking to give up big homes in the ‘burbs for city living. Neighbors Wednesday night got their first peek at SEEDnh architect Fernando Pastor’s plans for transforming the long empty, former convent at 345 Mckinley Ave. into a complex of nine condominiums. Part of the St. Aedan Church campus, the convent was built along with a bigger school back in 1957. It has been used sparingly by the church for the last decade, Pastor said. The building, designed by Schilling & Goldbecker, contains 20 small one-bedroom “nun’s cells” on three floors, a full height-basement and significant attic space, according to additional information provided by Pastor. It has been up for sale since 2013. Pastor said he often looks for the building he wants to redesign and finds the developer to fund the project. This time he found partner in Rafael Sanz; Pinto has done projects for two years with Sanz’s Elm Street-based Caritas Capital Partners. Pastor noticed the potential for the former St. Aedan convent two years ago, and initiated talks with the current pastor, the Rev. Thomas B. Shepherd. Pastor has worked on the renovation of the Yale University president’s house. He also designed Ashumn Flats, which opened at the end of September. Shepherd and Pastor were able to come to terms within a week of meeting, but the lawyers have taken a year to write the contract. With that process coming closer to completion, Pastor said the project is moving forward..."

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