Photos courtesy of Stuyvesant Town
“Think of us as a 1947 Cadillac retrofitted with a Tesla engine,” says Marynia Kruk, Stuyvesant Town and Peter Cooper Village‘s Community Affairs Manager. Though the 80-acre residential complex’s 110 red brick, cruciform-shaped buildings were constructed 70 years ago this month, their imposing facades are hiding an intense network of systems that, since 2011, have allowed the development to reduce its on-site carbon emissions by 6.8 percent, equal to over 17 million pounds of coal saved. To put this in perspective, that’s roughly the same savings as 3,000 drivers deciding to bike or take the train for an entire year or planting a forest of 400,000 trees.
This massive sustainability push, along with new ownership (Blackstone Group and Canadian investment firm Ivanhoe Cambridge bought the complex for $5.3 billion in October 2015), updated amenities, and an affordable housing commitment, is driving Manhattan’s largest apartment complex into the future, and 6sqft recently got the inside scoop from CEO and General Manager Rick Hayduk and Tom Feeney, Vice President of Maintenance Operations, who is spearheading the green initiative.
On a sloped plot of land in North Haven, a small village in the town of Southampton, sits a home covered in cedar, with woods on one side and a river on another. Designed by Leroy Street Studio, the Shore House sits at a spot where the forest opens onto the Peconic River. As Dezeen learned, the home, accessible through a path that winds through the forest, is perfect for big family parties or as a more private retreat. Its water side features large glass panels that open to a covered outdoor courtyard.
Find out more
Renderings via Handel Architects
Despite Mayor de Blasio’s success meeting his affordable housing goals, East Harlem has fallen behind. As 6sqft recently reported, out of the 21,963 new units added in 2016, just 249 were built in East Harlem, prompting the city to expedite the construction of 2,400 affordable units there over the next few years. A large chunk of this will come from Sendero Verde, a massive, mixed-use development that will bring 655 affordable rentals to the block bound by East 111th and 112th Streets and Park and Madison Avenues. Back in February, Jonathan Rose Companies and L+M Development Partners released a rendering from Handel Architects of the 751,000-square-foot project, but now CityRealty has uncovered an entire batch of drawings from the firm that detail how it will be the country’s largest passive house project and weave together the residences, a school, supermarket, and four community gardens, all surrounding a multi-layered courtyard.
More looks and details ahead
Since its founding in 1990, COOKFOX Architects has become one of the most recognized names in New York City real estate. In the firm’s early days, founding partner Rick Cook found a niche in historically-sensitive building design, looking for opportunities to “[fill] in the missing voids of the streetscape,” as he put it. After teaming up with Bob Fox in 2003, the pair worked to establish COOKFOX as an expert in both contextual and sustainable development. They designed the first LEED Platinum skyscraper in New York City with the Durst family, the Bank of America Tower, then took on a number of projects with the goal of designing healthier workplaces. The firm also got attention for its work in landmarks districts, winning AIA-New York State awards for its mixed-use development at 401 West 14th Street (better known as the Apple store) and its revamp of the the Stephen Sondheim Theatre. (The firm also made it the first LEED-certified theater in the city.)
6sqft’s conversation with Rick fox here
New York City developers have been increasingly competing to seek environment-friendly accreditations based on standards like Passive House, LEED and wellness to distinguish their offerings. Recently “Zero Waste,” defined by the U.S. Zero Waste Business Council as, “achieving over 90% diversion of waste from landfills, incinerators and the environment,” is rising in popularity, with good reason: Certified buildings won’t be generating the mountains of garbage that are the bane of NYC living. 565 Broome Soho, the under-construction condominium tower at the crossroads of Soho, Hudson Square and Tribeca, hopes to be Manhattan’s first Zero Waste-certified residential building, CityRealty reports.
Find out more
6sqft’s series Apartment Living 101 is aimed at helping New Yorkers navigate the challenges of creating a happy home in the big city. With temperatures climbing, we put together the best products and tips for keeping your apartment cool this summer.
If you’re not one of the lucky ones who has central cooling in their apartment, the summer months can be a challenge. A regular old fan won’t always do the trick, and traditional wall-unit air conditioners are bulky, hard to install, loud, expensive to run, and often associated with health risks such as respiratory issues, headaches, and skin irritation. If you’re looking to try something new this season, 6sqft has rounded up several products and innovations perfect for keeping apartment dwellers from sticking to the sheets when the mercury rises. We’ve also put together a list of tips for those who want to go completely off-the-grid and for those who simply can’t give up the wall unit, but want to be less wasteful.
Get it all this way
Image © MB Architecture
On a half-acre lot perched 18 feet above Gardiner’s Bay in East Hampton sits a unique site, shielded by neighboring waterfront homes on its east and west sides, but completely open in front to the bay. With these two extremes as their inspiration, MB Architecture designed the Driftwood House, using both reclaimed wood from the property’s previous home and charred cypress prepared using the traditional Japanese Shou-Sugi-Ban technique. The result is a sustainable residence that “[weaves] the line of the horizon through its spaces, slowly unveiling the views, with glimpses through layers and framed transparencies.”
See the whole house
UK-based technology company Pavegen built a sidewalk in London made up of kinetic pavement that turns pedestrians’ footsteps into energy. The 107-square-foot display on “Bird Street” harnesses and converts the power of footsteps into electricity that supplies energy for lights and bird sounds (h/t inhabitat). Walkers can connect via Bluetooth to an app on their phones to see how many joules of energy they’ve generated. Plus, the company partnered with local businesses that then will reward users with discounts and vouchers for their footsteps.
Learn more about the sustainable sidewalks
Photo courtesy of Green City Solution’s Instagram
Nearly 90 percent of residents in cities around the world breathe polluted air, which is the single largest environmental health risk, according to the World Health Organization. To address this global problem, Green City Solutions created a mobile installation of specific moss culture that has large surface leaf areas and that can remove pollutants from the air. As Curbed NY reported, this new mossy air filter has been installed in Oslo, Paris, Brussels and Hong Kong. According to the team, CityTree has the same effect as up to 275 trees but requires 99 percent less space and just five percent of the cost.
Find out more
© Pablo Enriquez for MoMA PS1
Every summer, New Yorkers are treated to kooky architectural innovation in the MoMA PS1 Courtyard. ( Last summer: this wild woven design from Mexico City-based architecture firm Escobedo Solíz Studio.) This year, Ithaca, New York-based architect Jenny Sabin takes the spotlight with her Lumen installation, a structure made of over one thousand digitally knitted photo luminescent cells that change color in the presence of sunlight. In honor of the installation opening this week, MoMA PS1 released videos in which the architect explains the development of her 500-pound solar-active canopy and shows off the construction and installation process.
Watch the videos here