Last week was an exciting week for design and a rewarding week for Dattner Architects! In celebration of the 2018 AIA Conference on Architecture (A’18) hosted in New York City, we were honored to take part in welcoming the design community to our “hometown.” From project tours and panel discussions to a behind-the-scenes look into our office, Dattner Architects shared our passion for civic architecture with locals and visitors alike.
As part of the conference’s nearly 100 architect-led tours throughout New York City, we were proud to provide tours through some of our high-profile and award-winning projects, including the new 34 Street – Hudson Yards Station, Manhattan Districts 1/2/5 Garage & Spring Street Salt Shed, Battery Park City Parks Conservancy Maintenance Facility, and Via Verde – The Green Way.
Team members from Dattner Architects, MTA Capital Construction (MTA CC), MTA Arts & Design, and Michael Van Valkenburgh Associates led four tour groups through the new Hudson Yards Station and surrounding Hudson Park. An integral part of the City’s redevelopment plan for the far west side of Manhattan, and the City’s first subway line extension in over 40 years, the mega project was completed on time and under budget – as noted by Vice President of MTA CC, Mark Schiffman PE, Esq. during the tour. A true testament to the project, similarities between the success of the project and the success of the tours were evident – as both were the result of a well-orchestrated collaboration among MTA CC and the design team.
Further downtown, overlooking the Hudson River, we were joined by NYC Department of Sanitation’s (DSNY) Assistant Chief Keith Mellis and toured visitors through the award-winning Manhattan Districts 1/2/5 Garage and Spring Street Salt Shed. These facilities are two of the City’s newest iconic structures; they have been embraced by their West Village community and become archi-tourist destinations. Visitors got a behind-the-scenes look into the vital functions of these important community infrastructure facilities, and heard from Dattner Architects and WXY team members on how applied design excellence can innovate, inspire, and exceed client expectations.
Project Manager for both projects, Dattner Architects’ Associate Principal Gia Mainiero AIA, LEED AP BD+C was thrilled with the outcome of the tours. “It was invigorating to discuss the design and sustainable features of the M125 Garage and Salt Shed with architects from across the country and share our enthusiasm for DSNY’s approach to keeping the dense streets of NYC clean in all seasons. Between the breezy view across the green roof in full bloom, to the view from the driver’s seat of a collection truck, we hope each visitor left with a new perspective on how great design can enliven workplaces and communities.”
A vital component to the Battery Park City community, the Battery Park City Parks Conservancy Maintenance Facility (BPCPCMF) reflects the vision of a service facility whose operations are as fully transparent to the community as their outdoor operations. An ideal case study in the Zero Waste Design Guidelines, BPCPCMF features a unique centralized compactor that can be used by other buildings in the surrounding area, therefore helping to reduce waste in Battery Park City. John Woelfling AIA, LEED AP, CPHT, Principal-in-Charge of the LEED Platimum building, was able to lead visitors through the facility while it was in operation.
From the 1970’s to current day, the Bronx has undergone much turmoil and change, becoming one of the fastest growing communities in the state of New York. The A’18 tour “Bronx Rising” invited visitors on an exploration of some of the borough’s most transformative projects, starting with our project, Via Verde – The Green Way, in the South Bronx. A model for future development locally, regionally, and beyond, Via Verde set a new standard for sustainable, urban housing. The winning entry in the International New Housing New York Legacy Competition, this new affordable residential development was designed by Dattner Architects and Grimshaw and developed by Phipps Houses and Jonathan Rose Companies. Dattner Architects’ Principal William Stein FAIA noted how engaged and informed the tour groups were as attendees from across the country remarked on the powerful impact of the interconnection between the gardens and the buildings.
M125 Garage and Salt Shed wins AIA National Honor Architecture Award
Winner of the 2018 Institute Honor Awards for Architecture, the M125 Garage and Salt Shed was formally recognized at the Honors & Awards Reception on June 21st at the Whitney Museum of American Art. One of the most prestigious awards in the architecture industry, Honor Awards celebrate the highest level of design excellence. Dattner Architects’ Principal Paul Bauer AIA, LEED AP and WXY Founding Partner Claire Weisz FAIA were recognized at the ceremony.
To welcome this year’s AIA Conference attendees and industry colleagues, Dattner Architects opened our doors to give a behind-the-scenes look at how we approach civic architecture. From who we are to what we do to why we do it, the goal was to convey what makes our firm mission-driven.
Along our studio pin-up wall, we showcased a select group of works-in-progress, projects from schematic design to construction phases including 425 Grand Concourse, slated to be the largest Passive House building in NYC; Scarsdale Public Library, an expansion and modernization of an existing library building; and NYPD Precinct 116, designed as a civic connector. In addition, the conference rooms exhibited our competition entries and award submissions, like our proposal for an equitable transit network in the recent Urban Design Call for Ideas.
As part of this AIA Open Studio event, and in the spirit of collaboration, we asked visitors to share their thoughts with us. Dotted throughout the office we posed questions like “Who are the stakeholders?” and “What keeps you up at night?” Visitors participated by jotting down their thoughts and posting it on the wall. To highlight our firm culture, words representing the spirit of our firm were displayed across the studio spaces – advocate, enrich, and educate to name a few. As visitors parted, we shared custom stickers designed as part of a charrette-style in-house competition and encouraged them to commemorate their visit by taking a selfie in our photo booth.
Design Snapshots: Award-Winning Civic Projects
Dattner Architects’ Principal Paul Bauer AIA, LEED AP and WXY Founding Partner Claire Weisz FAIA spoke at the A’18 Design Snapshots: Award-Winning Civic Projects. During the panel, Paul and Claire shared their insights into how the M125 Garage and Salt Shed reflect a commitment to civic expression and sensitivity to urban context, discussing the challenges and solutions that created what is now an iconic source of neighborhood pride.
College of Fellows Investiture Ceremony
Earlier this year, the American Institute of Architects elevated 152 members to its prestigious College of Fellows, including recently retired Dattner Architects’ Principal Joseph Coppola FAIA. The highest membership honor in the society, members are recognized for their significant contributions to the architecture profession.
The Class of 2018 were welcomed into the College of Fellows during an investiture ceremony held at St. Patrick’s Cathedral on Friday, June 22nd. Of the 152 new fellows, a record 28 are from the New York Chapter. Each person received the fellowship medal and were congratulated by family, colleagues, and friends as the procession moved along the main aisle and through the front doors of the cathedral.