Middle School Students Sketch Their Way Up to Becoming Pros


A student in the CFAF after-school Digital Design Studio works on his 3-D personal shelter using Google SketchUp.

Maggie Yolen

Three-dimensional modeling computer programs are no longer for those with degrees in architecture and engineering. In fact, you don’t even need a high school degree. Thanks to Google SketchUp, middle school students at the Center for Architecture Foundation (CFAF) are designing 3-D models from the ground up.

11.17.10 marked the close of CFAF’s after-school fall Digital Design Studio. The studio, which met every Wednesday for seven weeks, offered students in grades six through eight the opportunity to learn the particulars of the computer program. Architect and CFAF Design Educator Carol Gretter taught the studio in the Center for Architecture’s Ibex Computer Lab giving the students a seemingly simple assignment: design a personal shelter.

On the first day of class, Gretter asked students to draw a picture of three things that they love most. Then, she encouraged students to incorporate these passions into their 3-D designs. One seventh grader — a self-proclaimed car fanatic — designed garages for the rare cars he hopes to one day own. Other students integrated their interests in skateboarding, cooking, and gymnastics into their structures. By the last class, students were navigating through the program with ease and even discussed upgrading to Google SketchUp Pro. When asked if he would continue using SketchUp, one student replied, “Yes, a lot. I might even teach my friends how to use it.”

The after-school program attracted students from the West Village to Westchester, and will be offered again as part of CFAF’s spring break program. Architecture Inside-Out, a class for third- through fifth-graders, also will be offered this fall as an after-school studio. Visit http://www.cfafoundation.org for more details.

ENYA Has High Hopes for High Bridge

The “High Bridge” exhibition, currently on view at the Center for Architecture, features the results of the fourth biennial international design ideas competition hosted by the AIANY Emerging New York Architects Committee (ENYA). The opening and book launch on 11.11.10 brought together the volunteers who spent more than two years planning the competition, exhibition, and publication with winning team members and other entrants, local professionals, and Highbridge community members.

A panel discussion, moderated by ENYA Volunteer Najahyia Chinchilla, Assoc. AIA, featured the competition winners, who traveled from Philadelphia (Keith VanDerSys of PEG office of landscape + architecture, who won the ENYA Prize), Paris (Julien Boulley and Tetsuya Kawano, 2nd Prize), and New Mexico (Yekaterina Yushmanova and Kristina Guist, 3rd Prize and Student Prize, respectively). Each entrant presented his/her vision for the future of the historic High Bridge that spans the Harlem River between Upper Manhattan and the Bronx.

The proposals were mostly landscape-based, featuring improvements to the parks on both sides of the river (and up to the Croton Reservoir for the Student Prize). It was interesting to see that all of the winners chose to preserve the High Bridge — either by creating a structure next to or above the existing bridge (2nd and 3rd Prize), or simply by adding program to the bridge (ENYA and Student Prize). The projects provided gallery space for the theoretical clients, Artists Unite and the Bronx Museum of the Arts, but they also created environments that would elevate the bridge itself to a work of art. It was very refreshing to see such respect for the history of the site.

One of the goals for the ENYA competition program is to bring focus to a place that is underused and often overlooked, and to engage and inspire the community to imagine the possibilities for the future of the site. Boulley explained that neither he nor his partner had been to NYC before. The highlight of their visit was seeing the site in person (in addition to checking out the High Line). ENYA and the Center for Architecture Foundation completed an after school program with 5th graders from a local public school. Their cell phone tour is available in the current “Building Connections 14” exhibition. Katya Crawford, a professor at the University of New Mexico who used the competition for her studio (with very successful results), is now working with the committee to take the exhibition to Albuquerque when the show is over at the Center. And Elizabeth Lorris Ritter, chair of Community Board 12’s Park and Cultural Affairs Committee in Washington Heights, invited the committee to present the competition to the community board.

Having helped organize three of the four competitions, I am very proud to be a part of this program as it continues to grow and impact the built environment.

The Museum of Modern Art announced the P.S.1 Young Architects Program finalists to design an installation in the courtyard at P.S.1 for the 2011 summer season: FormlessFinder (Brooklyn); Interboro Partners (Brooklyn); Matter Architecture Practice (Brooklyn); MASS Design Group (Boston); and IJP Corporation Architects (London). The winner will be announced in February.

The National Trust for Historic Preservation has awarded a total of $60,000 to eight NYC projects that are of historic and cultural significance. Grant winners for the Robert and Elizabeth Jeffe Preservation Fund for New York City include: the Bartow-Pell Landmark Fund in the Bronx, which will host a workshop on historic landscape restoration of the formal gardens designed by Delano & Aldrich; Columbia Graduate School of Architecture, Planning and Preservation to support the Fitch Forum on preservation law and policy; Free Synagogue of Flushing, Queens, to lay the groundwork for future restorations of the complex’s late 19th-century mansion and a neo-Georgian style synagogue designed by Maurice Courland in 1927; Friends of the Upper East Side Historic Districts to produce an architectural and cultural guide featuring historic districts and landmarks; Louis Armstrong House Museum in Queens to fund a historic structures report; New York Landmarks Conservancy for funding a conditions assessment of Erasmus Academy building, constructed in 1787; Two Bridges Neighborhood Council to prepare State and National Register nominations for the Bowery; and World Monuments Fund to support the development of a model preservation program at Williamsburg High School for Architecture and Design.

The winners of the 18th Annual 2010 CANstruction New York competition include: “The BabushCAN,” by Thornton Tomasetti, Juror’s Favorite; “FEASTer Island,” by LERA, Best Structural Ingenuity; “Paint the Town ‘Fed,'” by Dattner Architects, Best Meal; “I Think I ‘Can,'” by MTA New York City Transit, Best Use of Labels. “Cups Can Only Spill,” by GilSanz Murray Steficek, and “Tomato Tornado,” by Skidmore, Owings & Merrill, won Honorable Mentions. “ShenaniCANs Care!” by Shen Milsom & Wilke, won the Cheri Award in honor of Cheri Melillo, Hon. AIA, the founder of CANstruction…

The Switzer Group is hosting the first-annual “Architects for Animals” event on 12.07.10. Participating design firms include: Gruzen Samton; Cannon Design; IA Interior Architects; Kohn Pedersen Fox; Davis Brody Bond Aedas; Zimmerman Workshop Architecture and Design; Tietz Baccon; Ryall Porter Sheridan Architects; and Larry Friedberg, AIA. Firms will build and donate outdoor winter shelters to provide NYC’s homeless cats with refuge from the weather…

Terence Riley, AIA, had been appointed Chief Curator for the 2011 Shenzhen & Hong Kong Biennale of UrbanismArchitecture…

Friends of the High Line announced that Google, Inc. has donated $1 million to the Campaign for the High Line, which will support construction and an endowment for future park maintenance and operations…

Magnusson Architecture and Planning has been designated an Enterprise Green Communities Technical Assistance Provider under Enterprise Communities Partners…

Mark D. Harbick, AIA, IIDA, LEED AP, has joined Mancini Duffy as Design Principal in the NY Corporate Interiors Group… J. David Hoglund, FAIA, LEED AP, has been appointed President of Perkins Eastman…

12.01.10 Call for Entries: 2011 Reign In Spain A&D Tour

12.06.10 Call for Collaboration: AIA Global Dialogues Haiti Habitat Program

12.07.10 Call for Entries: Freegreen.com Who’s Next

12.15.10 Call for Entries: $10,000 Zero Net Energy Building Award

12.31.10 Call for Comments: Next Update of U.S. Green Building Council’s LEED Green Building Program Opens for First Public Comment

01.10.11 Call for Entries: LifeEdited

01.24.11 Call for Submissions: 2011 AIA/COTE Top Ten Green Project Awards

01.24.11 Call for Entries: ED+C Magazine & Coverings’ PROJECT: Green Showcase

11.11.10: The AIANY Emerging New York Architects Committee (ENYA) celebrated the “High Bridge” exhibition opening at the Center for Architecture and the launch of the publication, HB:BX High Bridge International Design Ideas Competition. The exhibition was designed by Lyn Rice Architects; on view are 58 entries to the HB:BX Building Cultural Infrastructure international design ideas competition, the fourth biennial competition hosted by ENYA.


The opening featured a panel discussion with winners, who flew in from as far as Paris to speak. (L-R): Kristina Guist (University of New Mexico), Student Prize; Yekaterina Yushmanova (University of New Mexico), Third Prize; Julien Boulley and Tetsuya Kawano (Paris), Second Prize; Keith VanDerSys, PEG office of landscape + architecture (Philadelphia), ENYA Prize.

Edith Altamiranda


Competition organizers (l-r): Jessica Sheridan, Assoc. AIA, LEED AP; Joseph E. Hawkins, Assoc. AIA; Brynnemarie Lanciotti, Assoc. AIA; Najahyia Chinchilla, Assoc. AIA; Venesa Alicea, Assoc. AIA, LEED AP.

Edith Altamiranda


Exhibition designers Lyn Rice Architects: Lyn Rice, AIA, and Astrid Lipka, AIA (left), and Benjamin Cadena.

Jessica Sheridan


PEG office of landscape + architecture was invited to submit a piece that further explored their ENYA Prize-winning entry. The “Infra Bloom” was produced by Situ Studio for the exhibition.

Edith Altamiranda

11.11.10: The winners of the 18th Annual 2010 CANstruction New York competition were announced, including:


Juror’s Favorite, “The BabushCAN,” by Thornton Tomasetti.

Kevin Wick


Best Meal, “Paint the Town ‘Fed,'” by Dattner Architects.

Courtesy Dattner Architects

Feaster Island

Best Structural Ingenuity, “FEASTer Island,” by LERA.

Kevin Wick

Tomato Tornado

Honorable Mention, “Tomato Tornado,” by Skidmore, Owings & Merrill.

Kevin Wick

11.17-19.10: Build Boston 2010 took place at the Seaport World Trade Center. The convention included 200 workshops and professional development opportunities and tours of Boston-area design and construction projects hosted by AIA New England. For the Health & Design workshop, representatives from the NYC Department of Health & Mental Hygiene, the NYC Department of City Planning, and AIA New York discussed the nationwide applicability of the NYC Active Design Guidelines and Fit City conferences.


(L-R): Sean Fischer, NYC Department of Health & Mental Hygiene; Robyne Kassen, Assoc. AIA, Urban Movement Design; Skye Duncan, NYC Department of City Planning; and Rick Bell, FAIA, AIA New York Chapter.

Laura Manville

All-Access Architecture

Event: Inclusive Design Guidelines, New York City
Location: Center for Architecture, 11.01.10
Speakers: Matthew Sapolin — Commissioner, Mayor’s Office for People with Disabilities (MOPD); Robert Piccolo, AIA — Deputy Commissioner, MOPD & Editor in Chief, Inclusive Design Guidelines; Jason Mischel, Esq. — General Counsel, MOPD; Fatma Amer, PE — 1st Deputy Commissioner, Technical Affairs, NYC Department of Buildings; Steven Winter, FAIA — President, Steven Winter Associates, Inc.; William Stein, FAIA — Principal, Dattner Architects; Steven Landau — Director of Research, Touch Graphics; Robyne Kassen, Assoc. AIA — Design Director, Urban Movement Design; Sarah Gluck — Director of Movement Design, Urban Movement Design
Introductions: Rick Bell, FAIA — AIANY Executive Director, AIA New York Chapter; Jerry Maltz, AIA — Co-chair, AIANY Design for Aging Committee
Organizer: AIANY Design for Aging Committee


Inclusive wayfinding: This 3-D model of the Carroll Center for the Blind near Boston acts as a map that can be explored by touch, triggering audio clips with further information. Created by Touch Graphics, the “illuminated talking touch model” has a high-definition video projected onto it.

Steven Landau

“Inclusive design” addresses not only the needs of people with disabilities, but a wide range of other populations, too: a three-year-old may not be able to reach a standard handrail, for example, and a person with limited dexterity may find an ordinary water faucet tricky to use. A new book from the Mayor’s Office for People with Disabilities, Inclusive Design Guidelines, New York City (IDG), offers technical assistance for architects, so their designs can be more accessible to all.

IDG Editor-in-Chief Robert Piccolo, AIA, explained that the guidelines’ mission is to help designers learn how to “produce multi-sensory enhanced environments accommodating a wide range of physical and mental abilities for people of all ages.” The book’s recommendations are voluntary, but it is designed to function as a companion to the NYC Building Code. The goal was to produce a book that is easy to understand and familiar, and to avoid causing confusion between the guidelines and legal regulations, he added.

The IDG’s basic format is similar to the ICC/ANSI A117, noted Dattner Architects Principal William Stein, FAIA. But while he’s found that the code standard can seem complex and confusing, he praised the new guidelines for being more engaging and educational. Of particular interest are special sections that describe the rationale for why certain recommendations were chosen, such as a minimum corridor or stairway width. All in all, the guidelines struck him as an “inspirational” yet “highly practical” guide to “what really works to make the built environment inclusive to a wide range of people.”

Rounding out the evening, representatives from a couple of companies presented some of their accessible product designs, including grab bars by Urban Movement Design and multi-sensory maps by Touch Graphics, which can be explored by touch, sound, or sight. While inclusive design is still not as high-profile as sustainable design, that’s beginning to change, remarked Steven Winter, FAIA, president of an eponymous consulting firm that specializes in both areas. “In the next 10 years, the term ‘inclusive design’… will be as tightly woven into our urban fabric as green design,” he predicted. If so, the pages of the IDG are sure to soon be well known and dog-eared in architectural offices across the city.

Danish Architecture Dares to be Humble

Event: Five Keys to Interpret Contemporary Danish Architecture
Location: Center for Architecture, 10.27.10
Speakers: Marianne Ibler, Architect MA, Ph.D., RIBA — Founder & Director, Archipress M, & Vice Chair, Docomomo Denmark
Introductions: Ambassador Jarl Frijs-Madsen — Consul General, Denmark; Rick Bell, FAIA — Executive Director, AIA New York Chapter
Organizers: Center for Architecture
Sponsors: The Consulate General of Denmark in New York


Cover of Marianne Ibler’s book, 30 New Projects.

Courtesy Center for Architecture

If the 1990s and early 2000s were marked by exuberance and risk-taking, the current post-crash period may be better suited to the humbler, understated work of the Danes. “We are a small country,” noted scholar/architect Marianne Ibler, Architect MA, Ph.D., RIBA, founder of Archipress M, and a country that has often looked beyond its borders for ideas. Denmark’s traditions of well-crafted materials and efficient, function-driven Modernism are clearly defined, as are its progressive social ideals, but most Danish architects have also incorporated external influences, adding up to a national design sensibility that is welcoming rather than nationalistic.

Ibler’s presentation connected contemporary Danish work with a set of distinctly Danish values that, including a commitment to social equality, an appropriate sense of scale, a strong bond with nature, and a reluctance to make dramatic formal gestures merely for their own sake. Ibler’s “five keys” are simple aspects of everyday living: dwelling, playing, schooling, caring for others, and learning. Many of the buildings she discusses, both in her recent talk and in the most recent volume in the Global Danish Architecture series (Tradition and Crisis [Aarhus: Archipress M, 2009], with essays by Ibler, Kenneth Frampton, Assoc. AIA, and J.M. Cava; see “Traditions Resilient Enough for Hard Times,” by Bill Millard, e-Oculus, 05.18.10) are schools, hospitals, kindergartens, senior housing, and other public-service facilities. “Denmark has long been known for its welfare system,” she said. “It’s been looked upon as a kind of fairytale country,” providing every citizen with levels of service and quality of life that other industrialized nations claim they can’t afford.

In the housing complexes and schools that attract Ibler’s strongest attention, green design comes naturally, connection to the earth is more important than skyscraping ambition, and the outdoors is never far away. Schools incorporate ample open spaces to encourage learning both in and outside of the classroom. Solhuset, a nursery in Hørsholm by Christensen & Co., was among Denmark’s first passive-house designs, with high-performance glass and precisely chosen roof angles ensuring energy efficiency without elaborate technology. Ambitious renovation projects have converted a rather regimented 1960s building with conventional double-loaded corridors at the Danish Technical University in Copenhagen to flexible open spaces; an abandoned water tower in Jaegersborg has become a striking multi-use student center.

Projects like these evince the Danish design community’s capacity for applying advanced strategies and daring geometries to quotidian problem solving. The quiet circumspection of the buildings Ibler discussed may represent a purposeful, service-oriented design culture that continues to earn an influence disproportionate to its size.

KieranTimberlake Proves that Research, Innovation Lead to Performance

Event: Checkerboard Conversations: KieranTimberlake
Location: Center for Architecture, 10.28.10
Speakers: Suzanne Stephens — Deputy Editor, Architectural Record; Stephen Kieran, FAIA — Partner, KieranTimberlake; Introduction by Rick Bell, FAIA — Executive Director, AIANY
Organizers: Checkerboard Film Foundation; Center for Architecture; AIANY Architectural Dialogues Committee


Loblolly House.

© Halkin Photography LLC

This recent film screening and talk revealed Philadelphia-based KieranTimberlake to be at an intriguing juncture. Perhaps best known for its green prefab housing and academic buildings in the U.S., the firm is now poised to take on a higher international presence, through its (somewhat controversial) design of a new U.S. embassy building in London.

The event, the last of the Checkerboard Conversations series, began with a screening of director Tom Piper’s film KieranTimberlake: Loblolly House (2007), Cellophane House (2008). The documentary traces the story of the firm from its quiet beginnings to its rise in fame as research-focused innovators in sustainable architecture, epitomized by the Loblolly House (Kieran’s own residence in Taylors Island, MD) and the Cellophane House (a five-story structure commissioned for MoMA’s 2008 “Home Delivery” exhibition).

Designed as an experiment in streamlining the construction process, Loblolly House was their first foray into the techniques of prefabrication, or “off-site manufacturing,” as they prefer to term it. Thanks to the precision of parametric modeling, multiple components could be manufactured off-site at once, without fears that they wouldn’t fit together well. (Parts of the house were designed to tolerances of just one millimeter.) Elements such as “smart cartridges” — flat panels with multiple integrated components — allowed for easy assembly, and construction took just seven weeks. “The floor panels have radiant heating in them, microducted cooling, power for lighting, voice, and data — all of that comes loaded into these smart floor cartridges to just be plugged in at the house,” Stephen Kieran, FAIA, explained in the film. The residence is energy-efficient too, thanks to easily controlled natural ventilation that reduces the need for air conditioning. Though taller and more transparent, the Cellophane House is a direct descendant of the Loblolly House.

After the film Kieran presented a few other projects, such as Levine Hall at the University of Pennsylvania, and chatted with Suzanne Stephens, deputy editor of Architectural Record, about the embassy design. Some architects might seize upon a high-profile overseas commission as an opportunity for a grand aesthetic gesture, but instead KieranTimberlake chose a simple cubical shape (symbolic of a sense of permanence, and pragmatic in terms of daylighting).

Some critics have judged the design’s aesthetics harshly, but when Stephens asked Kieran for his reaction, he said, “I think the fundamental underlying reasons behind the criticism are that we were proposing… something that is part of an agenda to shift the underlying paradigm for how we make buildings.” For him, the ideal is to fuse aesthetics and performance inextricably, creating “an artful building” that’s also “an ethical building that exists on the highest level of performance possible.”

EASTON + COMBS Curates the Environment

Event: New Practices 2010 Winner Presentation: EASTON + COMBS
Location: Center for Architecture, 11.04.10
Speaker: Lonn Combs — Principal, EASTON + COMBS
Sponsors: Lead Sponsors: Dornbracht, MG & Company and Valiant Technology; Sponsors: Espasso, Hafele and Skidmore, Owings & Merrill; Media Sponsor: The Architect’s Newspaper


Model of Lux Nova by EASTON + COMBS.

Adam Ward

EASTON + COMBS, founded by Lonn Combs and Rona Easton, AIA, LEED AP, was established as a firm to watch when Lux Nova was a finalist in MoMA’s P.S.1 Young Architect’s Program. Although the firm did not have the opportunity to build its installation, it was to be constructed with extruded cellular polycarbonate, a material that offers many benefits including insulation, flexibility, and lightness while exhibiting extraordinary structural capacity. The plastic forms of Lux Nova were to pinwheel throughout the P.S.1 courtyard, establishing distinctive, color-coded zones and creating an interesting play of light and shadow. “We were interested in curating the environment,” Combs explained. Perhaps this is why they won the highest honor in this year’s New Practices New York competition.

Though Lux Nova may have put them on the map, EASTON + COMBS’ first built project is in an unlikely location — the Houston International Airport. The open-air, stand-alone parking facility operates at the scale of the automobile and features a long-span corrugated metal roof that arches unexpectedly. The simplistic, monochromatic structure seems to be on the opposite end of the architectural spectrum from Lux Nova in terms of color and scale, but they both illustrate the firm’s talent for making ordinary materials feel fresh again and shaping occupants’ expectations of public space.

Outside of the practice, Combs teaches at the Pratt Institute School of Architecture and oversees the Hunter Douglas Light Research Studio, where students developed a fabric model based on the structure of a typical Venetian blind. They explored the relationship between textile design and architecture “in a more pure way outside of some of the rigors of building,” he said.

He also participated in the design consortium behind HaitiSOFTHOUSE, a lightweight, transitional housing prototype that can be assembled in three hours. Along with three other designers, Rodney Leon, Mark Parsons, and Dragana Zoric, RA, RLA, Combs is forging a model that expresses “new ideas about practice, allowing us to step out of the traditional structure which is often purely about economic gain.”

In this issue:
· Pop-Up for Fashion
· Manhattan Expands Green Necklace to Tribeca
· Sephardic Community Center Doubles Its Space
· NYC Builds to Recycle
· Kliment Halsband Architects Designs for SUNY
· Marc Jacobs Opens Flagship in Hong Kong

Pop-Up for Fashion


Richard Chai’s fashions paired with Snarkitecture’s architectural design.

Photo by David B. Smith

Building Fashion at HL23, a series of temporary installations that celebrates cutting-edge design under the High Line, has almost concluded. The works re-appropriate the HL23 Tin, a trailer converted and designed by Spilios Gianakopoulos with Richard Pandiscio that was used as the sales office for the Neil M. Denari Architects-designed HL23. Hosted by the non-profit arts group Boffo and Gianakopoulos, the project pairs architectural professionals with fashion designers, giving them the opportunity to showcase their work in a pop-up store environment. The line-up includes: Simon Spurr and Collective; Heather Huey and Urban A&O; House of Waris with Christian Wassmann; Richard Chai and Snarkitecture; and Siki Im and Leong Leong (one of this year’s New Practices New York winners). The teams were selected by Architizer via a national search; Supima, a provider of luxury cotton for fashion and home textiles, teamed up with konyk to design more than 4,000 square feet of outdoor space that serves as an event area for the program. The program ends on 11.15.10.

Manhattan Expands Green Necklace to Tribeca


Pier 25 at Hudson River Park.

Signe Nielsen

Hudson River Park’s Pier 25 in Tribeca recently opened to the public. Designed by Mathews Nielsen Landscape Architects, which is responsible for the design for the entire Tribeca section of the park, the pier and adjacent area include moorings for small boats, an 18-hole miniature golf course, snack bar, beach volleyball, playground, artificial turf lawn for junior level sports, lounge seating, and a stargazing area. Almost five blocks long, Pier 25 is the longest pier in the park, which runs from Battery Place to E. 59th Street. Funding came from the Lower Manhattan Development Corp. (LMDC), along with 9/11 Community Development Grant funds. Representative Jerrold Nadler also provided funds that were used for the pedestrian parkway and a section along the esplanade. The Hudson River Park Trust continues to work on developing several other piers, including Pier 26, also in the Tribeca section, which will feature an estuarium — a river research and education center — and a boathouse that will double as a café by WXY architecture.

Sephardic Community Center Doubles Its Space


Sephardic Community Center.

Jonathan Wallen (left); Jeffrey Totaro

BKSK Architects has renovated and expanded Sephardic Community Center in Ocean Parkway, Brooklyn, doubling its size to 100,000 square feet. The facility serves as the educational, athletic, and social center for the surrounding community. The design features a gym, spa, childcare center, administrative offices, and meeting spaces. BKSK’s design also features subtle changes to the original façade, a layered glass and masonry composition for the new wing, and a continuous canopy that bands them together. In addition, the firm is working on the renovation of the neighboring Sephardic Synagogue. The project, which began in 2005, originally included three worship spaces, two social areas, classrooms, and offices, but the recession forced budget cuts that curtailed the project to a renovation of the existing interior.

NYC Builds to Recycle


Sims Municipal Recycling Facility.

Selldorf Architects

Ground was broken on the new Sims Municipal Recycling Facility in Sunset Park, Brooklyn. A public-private client partnership between Sims Metal Management and the City of New York, it will become the principal facility for all of the city’s metal, glass, and plastic recyclables. Designed by Selldorf Architects, the 125,000-square-foot facility, located near the entrance to the Gowanus Canal, is bounded by water on three sides and by the South Brooklyn Marine Terminal on the fourth side. It is conceived as a naturally vegetated peninsula with space carved out for the buildings and waterfront operations, including an enclosed barge unloading facility, and a materials-handling building for processing and storage of recyclables. A visitors’ center and administration building includes an exhibition space, classrooms, cafeteria, offices, and locker rooms, and is linked to observation areas in the recycling building via a pedestrian bridge. The design incorporates sustainable initiatives such as solar panels, stormwater collection, bioswales, and a wind-turbine. When completed in December 2011, the facility will minimize the distance that collection trucks travel between pick-up sites and receiving centers, allow Sims to expand its barge and rail-based transport systems, eliminate more than 260,000 vehicle miles traveled annually over city roadways, and create 100 new jobs.

Kliment Halsband Architects Designs for SUNY


SUNY Geneseo’s Doty Building (left); SUNY College of Optometry.

Kliment Halsband Architects

Three projects designed by Kliment Halsband Architects for the State University of NY are currently underway. In design phase is the renovation of the SUNY College of Optometry, a vertical campus serving 300 students and more than 75,000 patients, making it one of the largest outpatient eye and vision care facilities in the country. Located across from Bryant Park, the ground floor lobby will be transformed into a passageway that traverses the entire first floor. The three floors above the lobby are being renovated for the new student life and learning center, which will include lounges, a lecture hall, seminar rooms, fitness and recreation rooms, and a methods lab.

Construction is also underway on two buildings expected to achieve LEED Gold certification. A new 146,000-square-foot academic building at SUNY College in Old Westbury will provide classrooms, faculty offices, computer labs, administrative offices, and shared instructional and support spaces for the schools of arts and sciences, education, and business. The adaptive re-use of the 69,000-square-foot Doty building at SUNY College at Geneseo will act as the “front door” to the college providing space for the admissions office and other administrative functions, as well as a new recital hall for the School of the Arts.

Marc Jacobs Opens Flagship in Hong Kong


Marc Jacobs, Hong Kong.

Stephan Jaklitsch Architects

A new 1,500-square-foot Marc Jacobs flagship store designed by Stephan Jaklitsch Architects (SJA) — the seventh major Marc Jacobs project to be completed by SJA in 2010 — has recently opened on Canton Road in Hong Kong. The building has a custom black woven-like façade composed of concrete-fiber panels. A band of perforations extend across the façade, behind the custom Marc Jacobs signage, and emit LED lighting that bisects the solid mass. A frameless glass storefront provides clear views into store’s lower level; to the left of the entry a large state-of-the-art video wall sits above the stair to encourage circulation. The upper-level accessories floor sits above the threshold and features a central sycamore, glass, and stainless steel cashwrap and custom top-lit shelving displays that have become a signature of the brand.