“History is the fiction we invent to persuade ourselves that events are knowable and that life has order and direction.” In his coverage of our recently kicked off project for the Center for Fiction, Interiors and Sources’ Christopher Curtland invokes Bill Watterson’s Calvin (of the famous series ‘Calvin and Hobbes’). Curtland continues by sharing that BKSK Architects will be providing another kind of “order and direction” for the Center for Fiction, an organization that is preparing to relocate from midtown Manhattan to the growing Downtown Brooklyn Cultural District.
More specifically, we will be leading the design and interior buildout of the Center’s new headquarters at 280 Ashland Place. The team looks forward to playing a key role in the Center’s evolution into a Brooklyn-based institution, using the headquarters’ design as a vehicle for building a richer community of fiction lovers.
Read the full article in Interiors & Sources here.
American School & University‘s annual architectural portfolio showcases design excellence for both primary and secondary educational institutions. The publication’s 2015 edition features Convent of the Sacred Heart’s Athletics and Wellness Center, with the project falling into the category of “Outstanding Design.”
Several aspects of the design contributed to this recognition. For example, neighborhood-appropriate materials and clever massing ensure that the programmatically dense building fits in with its Upper East Side block, while masonry-driven solidity and underlying classical proportions recall the existing buildings on the school’s historic campus. A host of sustainable design strategies, such as a solar hot water system and a pool dehumidification heat recovery system, contribute to thermal comfort while minimizing nonrenewable resource consumption. In addition, easy access to several of the sustainable systems open students’ eyes to sources of the building’s energy, allowing the LEED Gold registered facility to act as a teaching tool.
The recently completed 2 Lafayette Street is included in this month’s Interior Design magazine, an issue charmingly titled “New York’s finest.” The article showcases seven renovated and re-imagined floors in the historic city-owned building, which now serve as work space for the Department of Youth and Community Development (DYCD) and the Department for the Aging (DFTA).
Through a design approach that embraced yet transcended the guidelines of the Department of Citywide Administrative Services (DCAS) and the Design Excellence program of the Department of Design and Construction (DDC), our team delivered a comfortable and community-centered workplace of exceptional quality. As Interior Design writes, “[t]he New York City Department of Design and Construction’s Design Excellence program continues to churn out, well, excellent projects.” We’re very happy to have partnered with DDC on this project, and applaud them (and Interior Design) for having so much DDC work included in this month’s issue.
The Center for Fiction has selected BKSK Architects to lead the design and interior buildout of their new headquarters at 280 Ashland Place, in the heart of the expanding Downtown Brooklyn Cultural District. The Center for Fiction’s new 17,000 square foot facility will offer three inviting floors of resource-rich space to literary professionals and enthusiasts alike. A partnership with Doyle Partners, whose expertise includes visual identities and environmental graphics, will reinforce BKSK’s design vision. Read more
The way that we protect and celebrate built history is a complex and important topic, and one that is explored in-depth in the latest issue of CLOG, LANDMARK. This is an especially timely publication for New Yorkers, as we commemorate the 50th anniversary of New York City’s pioneering Landmarks Law and simultaneously experience a very active period of development, in contrast to recent history. And as our neighborhoods continue to evolve, the landmarking process continues to spur dynamic, even divisive, discussion.
In CLOG’s words, “we must continually decide what is worth keeping. A significant percentage of buildings today—particularly in Western nations—are preserved through imposed guidelines. While there are myriad reasons why a building or site may warrant preservation, being deemed a landmark is one of the most powerful and complicated.”
LANDMARK includes a variety of essays representing a diversity of perspectives on the topic, including that of Harry Kendall. Order your copy of LANDMARK today to read his insights, among others. To speak with Harry about the potential of preservation advocacy to be both ambitious and progressive, or other topics in which he is an expert, please contact Gisela Garrett at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Our proposed renovations to the Polhemus Memorial clinic have been unanimously approved by the Landmarks Preservation Commission! Constructed in 1896-1897, the Beaux-Arts building is located in the Cobble Hill Historic District Extension. The building first served as the home of a hybrid hospital and medical school, founded by Caroline Herriman Polhemus in honor of her late husband. At the time, it was considered a towering medical facility because of the building’s unique 8-story height.
BKSK will be leading the transformation of the brick and limestone building into a 17-unit residential project, whose program differs significantly from the patient rooms, surgical facilities, labs, and auditoriums currently found within. Other major design work for this project will include the relocation of the building core to allow for improved residential layouts and views, the lowering of the top floor’s 6′ high window sills, and the removal of a third-floor pedestrian bridge that currently connects Polhemus Memorial to another building across Amity Street. The latter will include the restoration of original building detail from before the mid-20th century construction of the bridge.
Congratulations to the team!
Just last month, Citizen became the latest project in our portfolio to achieve LEED certification. Inhabitat was quick to pick up the news, sharing the milestone in a piece titled “Chelsea condo strikes LEED Gold for its emphasis on healthy living and indoor air quality.”
The project’s LEED Gold rating acknowledges the design’s accomplishments in areas such as reduced energy usage and improved indoor air quality. For example, the use of MERV-13 level filtration ensures significant reduction in building users’ exposure to air pollutants. Among the project’s other sustainable characteristics are abundant access to natural light, low flow fixtures, and bicycle storage for all tenants. To quote Inhabitat, “[e]very design detail of the Citizen, from its exterior envelope to its carefully placed entries and janitorial spaces, ensures a green lifestyle.”
Two of our own, architect Taka Sarui and marketer Gisela Garrett, are featured in this in the current issue of Connection magazine. Published bimonthly by the American Institute of Architect’s Young Architects Forum, Connection is focused on issues affecting young and otherwise emerging architectural professionals.
The August issue of Connection specifically explores the “State of Practice,” and includes a variety of perspectives on the business models, technology, and culture of contemporary architecture firms. Flip to page 10 to read Gisela’s thoughts on how firms can be more available globally, overcoming obstacles of both geography and time. Jump to page 64 for Taka’s reflections on the licensure process and its influences on multidisciplinary-minded designers.
Learn more about our firm’s many perceptive professionals here.
This morning, the team behind One Great Jones Alley celebrated a much anticipated milestone: the project’s groundbreaking.
Already hailed as a modern landmark, the 12-story development will feature an innovative terra-cotta screen facade that acknowledges the rich masonry and cast-iron articulation of the NoHo Historic District. The design also takes advantage of NoHo’s unique service streets, offering future residents a private entrance from Great Jones Alley that evokes the neighborhood’s rich history.
Among those in attendance at today’s festivities were our clients from Madison Realty Capital, Douglas Elliman’s unstoppable Eklund Gomes team, and our colleagues from Noble Construction Management Corp. Congratulations again to all involved!
Every day, the boundaries of education are becoming more permeable. Learning is increasingly understood as an active and ongoing process that continues past the school bell, beyond the classroom walls, and into un-planned areas of our lives. The best contemporary learning environments embrace this shift, setting the framework for ever greater educational possibilities. Below, we share five insights that are helping our teams design leading-edge environments for today’s learners. Read more