Place: Brooklyn, New York
Size: 8100 SF
This project was the conversion of a two story industrial building into a two unit residential building. The existing structure was an industrial building in an area of Brooklyn re-zoned for residential use. The original building was two stories tall and built to the full extent of the lot. In order to convert it to a two family residential use it was necessary to provide for light and air. In order to provide light and air, our scheme was to make a series of strategic cuts into the structure to provide a central court yard and a new stair, creating front and rear units. The front of the building faces a manufacturing district, and the building is near public housing projects. We felt this required a “tough” exterior. Folded plates in natural steel with a clear urethane coating make the front facade. The courtyard is heavily glazed, and separated by a trellis that provides a green screen between the units. The courtyard as well as the stair wells provide light and air to the interiors of the units. The roof has been developed as outdoor space. The interior was intended to be delivered partially built – essentially loft like apartments that the purchasers could then configure to their needs. The roof is accessible to both units and is occupiable.
The building is Energy Star rated, and boasts a host of other sustainable strategies. Metals and clean fill were diverted from landfill during demolition. The building is super insulated. The existing masonry shell and wood floor and roof joists were kept. The existing concrete floor was refinished. We salvaged beams and flooring from the demolition to patch the existing where damaged. We even used some of the beams as shelves in the kitchens. All appliances, lighting and mechanical components meet Energy Star criteria. Water saving devices such as dual flush toilets, flow restrictors, and recirculation lines were employed.