A 101-year-old sheet metal contracting company in New York City’s popular SoHo neighborhood will soon be replaced by upscale commercial and residential developments, the New York Times reported Friday.

Thomas De Lorenzo Sr. and his family have owned the Manhattan shop on West Broadway since 1907. Its clients have included actors Paul Newman and Fred Gwynne, and De Lorenzo workers made baseboards for fencers who competed in the 1976 Olympics, the paper reported.

The De Lorenzos have watched the SoHo neighborhood go from gritty to glamorous in the last two decades. But the land the one-story building sits on is worth more than the business ever earned in its history, so the family is selling the property and retiring.

Longtime customers spent last week saying goodbye. The New York Times has photos and the rest of the story (registration may be required): www.nytimes.com/2008/05/16/nyregion/16metal.html?_r=1&ref=nyregion&oref=slogin.