November 13, 2009

Stealth by Design

The New York Magazine recently ran an article about the City of New York’s Department of Design and Construction Design Excellence Program and the “high-level architecture” that has been a result of the program instituted by commissioner David Burney. We are currently one of the firms shortlisted by DDC to compete for small city architectural projects and are working on the renovation of three firehouses.

The three firehouses that we are renovating are Walker Houses, built during Mayor Walker’s administration (1926-1932). At each firehouse we are replacing the apparatus floors to handle the weight of new fire trucks, updating the kitchens and bathrooms to meet current codes, and replacing the house watch, which is the constantly manned control center of the firehouse. Our design strategy for the renovations is to carefully insert each new program element into the existing structure. Each insertion is clad in bamboo plywood for its durability, eco-friendliness, and easy maintenance. The warm bamboo tones nicely contrast with the existing white tile walls and new concrete floors.

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