Green Design

Brooklyn, Design, Green Design, Greenpoint

the greenpoint, brooklyn, waterfront development

Rendering of The Greenpoint via +TOM

The Greenpoint, a 40-story waterfront rental and condo tower and the neighborhood’s tallest building, topped out in February, launched sales in July and now, is a few months away from getting a public 275-foot long promenade at its waterfront site. After nearly a decade of delays, the Brooklyn walkway, the first of its kind to be privately built in Greenpoint, will open in the spring. According to the Wall Street Journal, the park will total 29,500 square feet, including a 4,000-square-foot playground with lots of trees and colorful oval panels above.

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Featured Story

Features, Green Design, photography, Sunset Park, The urban lens

Sims Municipal Recycling Facility, Sunset Park, recycling plants, NYC recycling

All photographs © James and Karla Murray for 6sqft

6sqft’s series The Urban Lens invites photographers to share work exploring a theme or a place within New York City. In this installment, we take a look at the inner workings of Sunset Park’s Sims Municipal Recycling Facility, from trash heaps to machinery to a learning center. Are you a photographer who’d like to see your work featured on The Urban Lens? Get in touch with us at [email protected].

The beauty of trash is not often lauded, but out on the Brooklyn waterfront, at Sunset Park’s Sims Municipal Recycling Facility, the process is oddly mesmerizing. En masse, the glass and plastic shards processed in the building’s bowels become a disposable rainbow, the sharp shapes of residential recyclables a testament to the mesmerizing aesthetic of large-scale sustainability.

Sims is located on the 11-acre 30th Street Pier, which also contains the city’s first commercial-scale wind turbine. On Sims’ second story is a recycling education center; surrounding its exterior are a number of nature-harboring reefs, moorings, and native plants; and on the roof is an observation deck. The plant sorts 800 tons of recyclables on 2.5 miles worth of conveyor belts and machines daily, the majority of NYC’s “commingled curbside material,” its site proudly purports. In total, the plant processes 200,000 tons of plastic, glass, and metal a year. Ahead, take a look at the Sims world, where trash is heaped so high it really does look like treasure if you squint.

Take a tour

Architecture, Design, Green Design

hurricane irene, narofsky architecture, long island

In the summer of 2011, Hurricane Irene landed in New York City and on Long Island, heavily damaging the area, the storm’s heavy rainfall and strong winds knocking down trees and causing major power outages. Turning destruction into art, Narofsky Architecture designed a house on an Irene-destroyed site using the wood from fallen trees (h/t dezeen). Based in Nassau County, the home features black locust, a rot-resistant wood, for its exterior paneling and shower benches and darkened pin oak for floors throughout the home. Even some of the home’s furniture was made from fallen trees, including its bookcases, mantels, dining table, and cabinetry.

Take a tour

affordable housing, Architecture, Bronx, Green Design

bedford green house, nycha, affordable housing

Rendering of the Bedford Green House courtesy of Edelman Sultan Knox Wood/Architects LLP and Hollister Construction Services

The construction of a 13-story supportive housing development in the Bedford Park neighborhood of the Bronx will begin Thursday when federal, state and city officials join nonprofit Project Renewal in a groundbreaking ceremony at the site. Located at 2880 Jerome Avenue, the Bedford Green House will feature 118 units of affordable housing for families, seniors, and singles. To connect its residents to nature, the building will be covered in carbon sequestering plants and have an operational rooftop greenhouse where residents will be able to raise fresh fish and produce, partake in healthy cooking demos, and enjoy a community playground.

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Green Design, Midtown West, Urban Design

MSG reimagined as a cemetery (L); Memorial walls in the subway stations (R). Via DeathLab

The rant that traveling via Penn Station is enough to kill you just took on a whole new meaning. Untapped Cities shared this vision from Columbia University’s DeathLab (yes, this is a group dedicated to dealing with death in the city) that reimagines Penn Station and Madison Square Garden as a giant cemetery and public space. The general idea is to be more eco-friendly and accessible. Not only will the human remains be used to fertilize the gardens, but family members and the general public will be able to record digital memories to be stored on a central server.

Learn more about this proposal

Green Design, Stuyvesant Town, Technology

The new owners of the massive East Village residential complex now known as StuyTown plan to spend over $10 million to install 10,000 solar panels on 56 buildings in the complex, the Wall Street Journal reports. Blackstone Group and Canadian investment firm Ivanhoé Cambridge bought the storied complex for $5.3 billion in October 2015. As 6sqft previously reported, the solar investment is part of an effort by Blackstone, one of the world’s largest private equity firms, to generate energy cost savings in its global commercial real estate portfolio. The panels will provide enough power for about 1,000 apartments each year–about nine percent of the units in the 80-acre complex–which Blackstone says will triple Manhattan’s solar power generating capacity and make it the largest private multifamily solar installation in the U.S.

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City Living, Green Design, Manhattan, Midtown

wHY, east river greenway, east river esplanade

In April, Mayor Bill de Blasio announced that the city will spend $100 million on closing the gap that stretches from 53rd to 61st Street along the East River Greenway in Manhattan. Beginning in 2019, the city plans on connecting all 32-miles of the greenway’s coastline with waterfront amenities for the public. As ArchDaily learned, an interdisciplinary design practice, wHY, has submitted a request for proposal to the New York City Development Corporation for the greenway’s 1.1 mile-long, undeveloped gap. The firm’s $70 million proposal calls for two lanes: a slow one for plants and pedestrians and a fast-lane for bikers and runners.

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condos, Green Design, Landscape Architecture, Midtown, New Developments

central park tower, extell development, hmwhite

Central Park Tower, New York City’s future tallest residential skyscraper, is getting a more down-to-earth design. As CityRealty learned, the supertall at 225 West 57th Street on Billionaires’ Row will feature a sprawling landscaped space designed by HMWhite. The firm’s terrace design includes both passive and active recreational areas, like a central open lawn and a sequence of complimentary garden rooms. Renderings of the projected 1,550-foot tall tower reveal a lap pool overlooking West 57th Street and a sun deck among pergolas and trellises.

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Featured Story

Architecture, Design, Features, Green Design, Interviews

Ada Tolla and Giuseppe Lignano

After completing architecture school at Universita’ di Napoli, Italy, Ada Tolla and Giuseppe Lignano fell in love with New York City, deciding in 1995 to establish an innovative firm in Manhattan called LOT-EK. Early experiments in the art world grew into a substantial architecture practice, but their philosophy has always been the same: Both Ada and Giuseppe are focused on a concept they call “up-cycling,” taking existing objects and elevating them through art, design, and architecture. The firm has done its most innovative work re-using shipping containers and received a wave of attention this year for a Brooklyn residential project that utilized 21 shipping containers in surprising, stunning ways.

The firm has just released its second monograph, LOT-EK: Objects and Operations, a photo-heavy showcase of dozens of projects the firm produced around the world over the past 15 years. “LOT-EK is a design practice that believes in being unoriginal, ugly, and cheap,” the book states. “Also in being revolutionary, gorgeous, and completely luxurious.” With 6sqft, co-founder Giuseppe Lignano talks about the early days of running a firm and waiting tables in 1990s New York, explains the firm’s philosophy behind sustainability and re-use, and discusses the inspiration behind their notable Williamsburg project.

This way for the interview

Architecture, Green Design, Upstate

Half-Tree House, barryville, upstate, cabin, tree house, JacobsChang

Located within the forest of the Catskills town of Barryville is the Half-Tree House, designed by the Manhattan firm JacobsChang. This remote 60 acres of land, about two hours outside of New York, is a second-growth forest in a steep, isolated area with no vehicular access, no piped water, and no electricity. The firm designed this 360-square-foot cabin on a $20,000 budget for the clients, who also decided to construct the structure entirely by themselves with only weekend assistance. JacobsChang made building on the difficult site easier by lifting the structure above the ground and bringing in support from the surrounding trees. It was an apparent success, with a compact and modern cabin sitting gracefully within its surroundings.

The interior is simple yet stunning

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