lower east side 40 unit housing
Proposing a 40 Unit Housing development in the Lower East Side of Manhattan was heavily influenced on the upbringing of the neighborhood, more so, in its cultural influences and contributions within the past decades. As the LES has been growing exponentially in regards to its streetlife, nightlife and social exposure, it was important to keep that notion, that personality, that uniqueness that LES offers Manhattan. There is no other LES, it is inimitable;
a neighborhood of its own creation, a Frankenstein of sorts - composed of young adults, chain-linked basketball courts, intimate restaurants, streetwear boutiques, and immigrant founded housing; all while being drenched in a coat of graffiti.
The site sits just at the finish line of the Williamsburg Bridge at what is currently being occupied as a parking lot, rather a lack of possible public usage. At the corner of Broome Street & Suffolk, the Forty Unit Housing is adjacent to its minor sister project, the Five Unit Housing. This development was encouraged to be of the same architectural language and concept as its sister.
1// Studio Apartments
2// Two Bedroom Apartments
3// Three Bedroom Apartments
4// Lobby // Bike Storage
5// Private Parking
6// Public Space
Approaching the site required a deft conscientious plan for each housing unit type, its relationship to each other, public space and site accessibility. The concept bridged from the Five Unit Housing, using the wall to house the inner workings of the project. For the wall, it was taken for what it was, then extruded in depth and given a purpose to occupy circulation and utilities. Because of this approach, it was certain that residents were to both dwell within and without The Threshold. Then from this the living units would embrace the wall, but to distinguish it differently from its sister, the wall would not be the dominant form to the design, but rather the units would be; a conceptual inversion of the Five Unit Housing.
Public Space for the Forty Unit Housing transcribed from the encapsulating notion of what the Lower East Side offers; a form of communication between its inhabitants and the cultural opportunity for the city of Manhattan. Thus, the space was created as a platform to be the communicative bind between the residents and the public.
In continuation with the platform of the public space, a new program was conceived secondary to the project; an artists gallery. This gallery was intended to be the final link between the proposed project and the Lower East Side, a complimentary and programmatic head nod to the culture and diversity in the neighborhood. To the Lower East Side, this gallery would be a proud piece of architecture devoted to the artists who use the neighborhood as their canvas. Considering the amount of graffiti and street art, the Gallery would be a portal for artists to portray their art in a more intimate manner, among visitors, collectors, and enthusiasts.