Scarano Architect PLLC. MEMBER AIA

Scarano Architect

Grand Street

Grand Street

Project Manager/Designer: Robert M. Scarano jr.

Completion Date: June 2005

Location: Williamsburg

A modest two story brick factory building converted to apartments under a previous application is expanded to create three modern penthouse units with roof terraces and double height ceilings. Constructing an addition on a previously converted building, (which remained occupied during construction), can be a major inconvenience to the existing occupants if not handled properly. Further, the attachment of the new structure to the old building can be logistically difficult if the integrity of the roof membrane has to be compromised. This project presented these problems because the budget for the work was only $100 per sq. ft.

To keep the weight down for the new floor heavy ganged steel joists were used for the structural walls and floors instead of traditional steel skeleton or masonry bearing wall. This not only saves load on the existing structure, but reduces cost as well. A mixture of stucco and metal panel exterior cladding was chosen since they provide lesser pounds per square footage than traditional masonry products.

The design acts as a capping to the facade, which prior to the installation was a simple brick exterior. The taller windows framed in metal and inclined, flood the interior with light and contribute to the loft like feel of the apartments. By providing a cap to the elevation, the facade takes on a completed look and appears to have been constructed at one time rather than in phases. The contrast between materials compliment rather than fight each other, creating a fa├žade of interest and distinction.