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641 Avenue of the Americas / Cook + Fox Architects

©Cook+Fox Architects

Architect: Cook+Fox Architects
Location: New York, NY
Client: Cook+Fox Architects LLP
Completion: July 2006
Size: 12,121 SF

This interior design project from 2006 by Cook + Fox Architects is the first LEED Platinum certified project in New York. It is an office space in one of New York City’s early 20th Century skyscrapers, one that still has much of its architectural details intact, along with some new features that make it a sustainable factor within the city’s urban terrain.

©Bilyana Dimitrova

The office space at 641 Avenue of the Americas is inspired by the desire to create a healthy and productive work environment.  Among its many features, the most prominent is the 3600 square foot rooftop garden that features drought-tolerant, low-maintenance sedum species with a flexible, nylon module system called Green Paks.  The green roof contributes to reducing storm water runoff, reducing the building’s cooling load and fighting the heat island effect in New York City.

©Cook+Fox Architects

The roof was a made possible by Cook + Fox volunteers that hand-laid the Green Paks and prepared plants.  It also benefited from the collaboration with the Gaia Institute in which they studied water retention and growth rates of the sedums to choose those most beneficial to the environment of the rooftop garden.  As part of a larger effort to inform environmental decisions among designers and architects, the Gaia Institute was also invited to test  the success of various soil aggregate compositions.

©Cook+Fox Architects

This project has been used as an example by Mayor Bloomberg’s PlaNYC campaign to advocate long-term sustainability goals, strategies and possibilities afforded by even the most urban environments.  Regular tours of office give a better look at the various systems at play that make this office a healthy environment and an example of a sustainable approach to interior design.

©Cook+Fox Architects

The office has many features that contribute to its LEED Platinum status.  It has an upgraded HVAC system, operable windows, low-VOC materials, and benefits from the amount of sunlight that the office gets over the course of the day.  These features contribute to natural ventilation that help protect the indoor air quality year round.  Water-saving strategies include waterless urinals, dual-flush toilets, and motion sensor lavatory faucets.  These contribute to a 40% reduction in water consumption.  Natural materials were also selected for the office, those which have durability, are local and have ecologically friendly features.  These help the office act as an experimental zone, or “learning lab”, to develop materials that are more environmentally responsible. In 2011, the interior design made it on the AIA’s Interiors Merit Winners.

MEP Engineer: Flack+Kurtz, Inc.
Green Roof Consultant: Green Roof Blocks/Green Paks
Lighting Consultant: Cline Bettridge Bernstein Lighting Design, Inc.
HVAC Controls Consultant: Trane New York
General Contractor: Stephens Construction
Millwork: Woodweave Furniture Company
Commissioning Agent: Jaros, Baum, and Bolles
Graphic Design Consultant: Doyle Partners
Code Consultant: JAM Consultants, Inc.

Check out some of Cook+Fox Architects’ other projects featured on ArchDaily here.

641 Avenue of the Americas / Cook + Fox (1) ©Cook+Fox Architects
641 Avenue of the Americas / Cook + Fox (2) ©Cook+Fox Architects
641 Avenue of the Americas / Cook + Fox (3) ©Bilyana Dimitrova
641 Avenue of the Americas / Cook + Fox (4) ©Cook+Fox Architects
641 Avenue of the Americas / Cook + Fox (5) ©Cook+Fox Architects
641 Avenue of the Americas / Cook + Fox (6) ©Cook+Fox Architects
641 Avenue of the Americas / Cook + Fox (7) ©Cook+Fox Architects

641 Avenue of the Americas / Cook + Fox Architects originally appeared on ArchDaily, the most visited architecture website on 05 Jul 2012.

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Holiday house Vitznau by Lischer Partner Architekten Planer AG (CH)

Holiday house Vitznau by Lischer Partner Architekten Planer AG Dailytonic

A Swiss architectural practice Lischer Partner Architekten Planer AG have completed this concrete-clad, minimalist holiday residence located in Vitznau. Boasting spectacular views of Lake Lucerne, Switzerland’s fourth largest lake, the interior of this two-storey house has been lined with larch wood block panels following ‘the clients’ desire was to live in a timber house.’ More about the project:

Orfi Sera / YERce Architecture

© Emin Emrah

Architect: YERce Architecture – Nail Egemen
Location: Izmir, Turkey
Project year: 2011
Photographer: Emin Emrah

© Emin Emrah

Looking at the design and realization process of the project one can notice that the challenge was to build up the perception of a firm through the ‘atmosphere’ it has and the ‘activities’ it hosts; instead of adopting a design approach which focused only on product display and aimed for a space with only showroom function.

© Emin Emrah

Concept of ‘street’, ‘garden’ and ‘square’ were the key elements of the design. One was entering a luminous hall thanks to the light coming from its roof from a dimly lit existing showroom space. Naturally this was causing one’s eyes to be dazzled. We thought about connecting these two spaces with a buffer zone. In this way one could have entered to the luminous space with ‘slow’ but ‘balanced’ change of light after a curiousity awakening trip in a curvilinear path. This has become the expression of the ‘street’ idea. On one side our street we designed a brick wall in which the holes of the bricks were laid horizontally. This wall, as seen from the holes of the bricks forming it, gave mysterious information about the space lying behind it. Moreover the street was illuminated with the light passing through the holes of the bricks and thus its ground was showing the lacework created by light.

© Emin Emrah

One full façade was facing amazing cypresses. We wanted to make this facade more transparent so that the exterior landscape could integrate with the inner space. Together with the transparency concept; a sculptural olive tree in the space, few bambu’s, ceiling ventilators circulating the air and a parrot reminding the tropical forests became the expression of the ‘garden’ idea.

Moreover we imagined a central space where various activities such as meetings, presentations, celebrations, plays, exhibitions, speeches can take place. We were inspired by the piazza’s of Italy made up of unpolished natural travertine. We chose the same material and used unpolished natural travertine in this central space which became the expression of ‘square’.

© Emin Emrah

Last but not least, we realized that the abundant light which the space was receiving and the green plants it was containing made the space look like a greenhouse. This became the inspiration for the name of it, ORFISERA; ‘Orfis’, the name of the firm and ‘Sera’, greenhouse in Turkish.

plan

OrfiSera / YERce Architecture - Nail Egemen YERCE  (10) © Emin Emrah
OrfiSera / YERce Architecture - Nail Egemen YERCE  (1) © Emin Emrah
OrfiSera / YERce Architecture - Nail Egemen YERCE  (2) © Emin Emrah
OrfiSera / YERce Architecture - Nail Egemen YERCE  (3) © Emin Emrah
OrfiSera / YERce Architecture - Nail Egemen YERCE  (4) © Emin Emrah
OrfiSera / YERce Architecture - Nail Egemen YERCE  (5) © Emin Emrah
OrfiSera / YERce Architecture - Nail Egemen YERCE  (6) © Emin Emrah
OrfiSera / YERce Architecture - Nail Egemen YERCE  (7) © Emin Emrah
OrfiSera / YERce Architecture - Nail Egemen YERCE  (8) © Emin Emrah
OrfiSera / YERce Architecture - Nail Egemen YERCE  (9) © Emin Emrah
OrfiSera / YERce Architecture - Nail Egemen YERCE  (11) © Emin Emrah
OrfiSera / YERce Architecture - Nail Egemen YERCE  (12) © Emin Emrah
OrfiSera / YERce Architecture - Nail Egemen YERCE  (13) © Emin Emrah
Plan Plan
Section Section
Section Section

Orfi Sera / YERce Architecture originally appeared on ArchDaily, the most visited architecture website on 04 Jul 2012.

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Stählemühle by Philipp Mainzer Office for Architecture and Design (DE)

Stählemühle by Philipp Mainzer Office for Architecture and Design Dailytonic

German practice Philipp Mainzer Office for Architecture and Design have given an abandoned, old mill estate a new lease of life by converting it into a state-of-the-art fruit distillery. Located in the south German city of Eigeltingen, the new, 143-square-meters ‘Stählemühle’ encompasses a distillery as well as degustation and tasting areas. The conversion was completed in 2010.  More about the project:

Glazed Apartment / Sergi Pons

© Adrià Goula

Architect: Sergi Pons
Location: Barcelona,
Builder: GdR (Reforms Group)
Project Area: 70 sqm
Project Year: 2012
Photographs: Adrià Goula 

© Adrià Goula

This reform, made in a 70 m2 apartment in the Gracia neighborhood of Barcelona, revolves around a central gero bricks wall that is the frame of all the inside space elements.

© Adrià Goula

This wall, which in turn divides the apartment into two clearly different living atmospheres, day and night, has three large openings, that create visual relationships and the path between the different parts of the program.

© Adrià Goula

The translucent glass doors glide along the wall creating transparency sets not only between the different spaces but also with the wall itself.

© Adrià Goula

The bathroom is no longer understood as closed in itself but as a space on the move which flows and can already be spotted from the dwelling access.

© Adrià Goula

The kitchen is in charge of articulating the whole access area and turns into a functional furniture. This furniture is characterized by the volume suspended from the ceiling and contains all the essential cooking elements.

© Adrià Goula

The citric yellow creates, as the customer desired, a cold, almost icy atmosphere. The concrete floor amber-tinted provides its warmth to the place.

plan

Galzed Apartment / Sergi Pons (1) © Adrià Goula
Galzed Apartment / Sergi Pons (2) © Adrià Goula
Galzed Apartment / Sergi Pons (3) © Adrià Goula
Galzed Apartment / Sergi Pons (4) © Adrià Goula
Galzed Apartment / Sergi Pons (5) © Adrià Goula
Galzed Apartment / Sergi Pons (6) © Adrià Goula
Galzed Apartment / Sergi Pons (7) © Adrià Goula
Plan plan

The Offices of Buck O’Neill Builders / Jones | Haydu

© Bruce Damonte

Architects: Jones | Haydu
Location: , California, USA
Project Team: Paul Haydu,
Project Area: 1,200 sqft
Photographs: Bruce Damonte

A young general contractor with a strong belief in sustainable building practices wished to create a new, LEED certified office space that demonstrated his considerable construction skills.

© Bruce Damonte

While the selected raw space was not large (1,100 S.F.), it offered high ceilings, a mezzanine, and a large glass storefront.  Numerous low partition workstations, a private office, a conference area, and a kitchenette were carefully placed within to maximize function and daylight penetration while providing spatial interest with a flow that fostered communication. Given the size of the space and the amount of program, the materials palette was kept to a minimum. Particular attention was given to green and recycled materials.

© Bruce Damonte

Reclaimed Douglas fir was used at the partitions, entry wall, and cantilevered stair. Workstation counters are recycled paperstone. Cork tile was used in the conference areabathroom, and kitchenette. No VOC paints were selected for all walls and ceilings. Energy efficient fixtures were selected and instead of a traditional HVAC system, each workstation has an independently controlled radiator. The focus of the space is a living wall of mixed plants that takes filtration a step further.

© Bruce Damonte

The plants are affixed to a perforated stainless screen that is connected to a fan. Air is drawn through the plants, thus providing natural filtration, and then recycled back into the space. The office space is on track to achieve a LEED (R) Gold rating.

First Floor Plan

The Offices of Buck O’Neill Builders / Jones | Haydu (3) © Bruce Damonte
The Offices of Buck O’Neill Builders / Jones | Haydu (1) © Bruce Damonte
The Offices of Buck O’Neill Builders / Jones | Haydu (2) © Bruce Damonte
The Offices of Buck O’Neill Builders / Jones | Haydu (4) © Bruce Damonte
The Offices of Buck O’Neill Builders / Jones | Haydu (5) © Bruce Damonte
The Offices of Buck O’Neill Builders / Jones | Haydu (6) © Bruce Damonte
The Offices of Buck O’Neill Builders / Jones | Haydu (7) © Bruce Damonte
The Offices of Buck O’Neill Builders / Jones | Haydu (8) © Bruce Damonte
First Floor Plan First Floor Plan
Second Floor Plan Second Floor Plan

Living in an Open Floor Plan

Sleeping on the bridge: alternative usage of a former connection of two buildings; Photo © Pierre Kellenberger / Architonic

At a former industrial site in the North of Zurich, young people show the potential of an open floor plan, how to build sustainably using recycled materials, how to be resource conscious, and demonstrate that food from Aldi – a discounter – can well be in line with an ecological and anti-consumption attitude. (by Susanne […]

Things Are Getting Creepy in This Manhattan Loft

At first glance, this loft redesign in the Meatpacking District seems quite the fashionable project, with all the amenities and panache utterly lacking in the average apartment, both yours and mine. Of course, it’s a bit dark and somewhat overwrought–a deliberate aesthetic say the designers, referring to the charcoal slate stone slabs and granite counter-tops whose somber color palette is skewed to the gritty grays and blotched blacks once characteristic of the neighborhood’s historical industrial identity. But it’s not just the colors or materials that unnerve us, so much as the vintage memorabilia and props scattered around the apartment.

Period baby dolls, wearing nothing but rosy cheeks and knowing expressions, inhabit their own little corner (the ‘doll wall’) of the living space, while leopard skin rugs and animal trophy heads pile on the creep-factor in the bedroom. The kitchen is overseen by a row of seemingly charred doll heads, encased in what looks like rusted scrap metal. Portraits of royalty hang above the sofa and mason jars containing–what else–doll legs add “industrial flair and artistic edge”, in the designers’ own words. If they say so. All I know is that I wouldn’t last one night.

A New York Loft That Prizes LEGOs As Much As Mies’s Barcelona Chair

If there’s anything to be learned from last month’s record-breaking 105 feet-tall LEGO tower in Seoul, it’s that LEGOs can, in fact, be used to build. Whether what they build is of any consequence is another matter entirely–one wouldn’t exactly describe a LEGO “skyscraper” as being particular useful or expect such frivolity to convey anything other than the dollar signs of its corporate provenance (real-world example!). Regardless, the versatility of the plastic bricks reach far beyond their rigid, box-like proportions. Case in point, the  Marks/Caride Residence, a recently renovated Chelsea loft that features a staircase with railing made from nearly 20,000 LEGO blocks.

I-Beam Architecture And Design led the loft revamp, which uses subtle design cues to divides the space into various zones. Work and living areas are unified by a subdued material palette (solid walnut floors and fixtures, carrera marble countertops), while the “play” areas, such as the bedroom of the clients’ son, are treated more expressively with a diversity of color and materials. The architects worked with licensed LEGO artist Sean Kennedy to create the stairs, whose appearance follows a color gradient that intensifies or recedes according to the up-and-down movements of the occupants. A series of randomly spaced Mondrian-like apertures break up the otherwise gleaming plastic surface, lending the stairs a sculptural quality. The cross-hatching of primary color along the top of the rail is a nice detail and speaks to the planning and effort expended on the design.

[via Freshome]

Sugamo Shinkin Bank / Tokiwadai branch by Emmanuelle Moureaux Architecture + Design (JP)

Sugamo Shinkin Bank / Tokiwadai branch by Emmanuelle Moureaux Architecture + Design

The French-born, Japan-based architect Emmanuelle Moureaux has realised this joyful three-storey Tokiwadai branch of a Japanese Sugamo Shinkin Bank. Featuring a distinctive white façade punctured by numerous, variously-sized windows and incorporating a reoccurring theme of leaf motifs, the building aims to provide the visiting clients with ‘a natural, rejuvenating feeling.’ More about the project:   ‘Sugamo Shinkin Bank is […]