A First Look at Karl Fischer’s Design for 427 East 12th Street

427 E. 12th St.Karl Fischer An exclusive rendering of the new building bound for 427 East 12th Street

When the news first broke that a new six-story residential building at 427 East 12th Street would be designed by controversial architect Karl Fischer, speculation immediately ensued about its appearance.

Now, The Local has obtained a rendering of the building, which is marked by floor-to-ceiling windows and a penthouse that sits two stories above its neighbors. The developer of the building, Shaky Cohen, said that he and Mr. Fischer had strived to make the building fit into the neighborhood.

“We try to blend in to the neighborhood. We try not to be a focal point,” Mr. Cohen said. “Obviously it’s a modern building — we’re not going to replicate a design from the 1930s.”

He added that the building will feature a pair of one-bedroom apartments on floors two through five, with the ground floor accommodating an apartment with a backyard, and the top floor a penthouse. The building will also include perks like a virtual doorman and a communal roof deck.

But two local preservationists scoffed when they saw Mr. Fischer’s design.

“It doesn’t do a good job acknowledging its surroundings,” said Richard Moses, an architect who is a member of the Lower East Side Preservation Initiative. “It seems to me it could do a better job developing a dialogue with the environment around it.”

Still, he added a word of caution: “Perhaps the rendering doesn’t do it justice.”

But a close follower of construction on the Bowery — where Mr. Fischer has designed another oft-criticized building south of Houston Street — had much harsher words for the design.

“The contempt for the historical and architectural character and context of neighborhoods is appalling,” said David Mulkins with the Bowery Alliance of Neighbors. “One wonders if the architect has even visited or researched the areas he is building in.”

Mr. Cohen said that some of the residents on 12th Street were already aware of the new design and had not expressed any reservations with it. He also said that the previous owner of the property had sought to build a similar building, which could not be confirmed before The Local’s online deadline.

As for the controversy surrounding Mr. Fischer’s designs, Mr. Cohen said the architect was remarkably reliable.

“He is very good in the nuts and bolts of a project,” said Mr. Cohen. “He understands what the client wants and needs and he’s able to deliver a solid building in a quick turnaround.”