Loft25, Chelsea, NYC
how to brand a large complex with a diminutive addition
Location: Chelsea, New York City, 2009
Project Size: 9 Stories, 112,000 SF, 79 Units
Project Type: Loft Building Renovation, New Addition and Interiors
Client: RAL Companies & Affiliates, LLC
With: CDA, Cangelosi Design architecture
A maasive masonry nine-storey masonry factory building used for printing is converted into 72 apartments. The building is connected to a new addition housing nine apartments, which creates the identity for the whole complex with this narrow structure.
The 20’ wide addition started as a 120’ tall beacon of light, with a sculpted tri-dimensional glass wall that moved progressively away from the street uncovering balconies cantilevered towards the Highline. The balconies increased in depth with the rising levels, similarly to the Singer Building.
At the end of the design process, the project changed dramatically, when we learnt that the new addition had to be reduced to half the height of the historic building.
In the complex under construction, the restored factory building is being transformed by the overlapping extended stainless steel eyebrows stitching the older parent building and the angular addition. The shiny stringcourses project at slight angles, kind of like moving your eyes left to right to catch the views, away from the projects in front.
Melding artistic and architectural experimentation, the angled stringcourses are the replica of the aluminum backdrops of the “minimal pours” by one of the design partners who is also a gestural artist.
The sculptural paintings, hanging in our studio the day we were looking for a solution to the design problem, became the expression of the architectural concept and the project logo visual motif, melding artistic and architectural experimentation.
The lobby entrance and Zen-garden occupy the ground floor of the new addition, the extensive structural elements penetrating the lobby have been incorporated in the design, like abstract sculptures wrapped in colored resin and lighting.
On the roof the wood deck is divided in two areas by a planted field of native grasses and wildflowers, species found on the Highline. The west “Day Deck” is animated by umbrellas, lounge chairs and cooled by outdoor showers. The east “Night Deck” is furnished with an outdoor bar, picnic tables, an outdoor grille and a fountain doubling as a beverage cooler. The deck area is surrounded by a running track, at once functional and voyeuristic.
Both the loft apartments andthe smaller newunits recorded great sale as well as re-sale prices.
How do you marry a pre-war ink press building with an ultra-modern addition in a seamless way that complements the surrounding neighborhood? That was the challenge that TRA Studio Architecture faced with Loft25, a nine-story renovation + new build in Chelsea. The resulting 112,000-square-foot structure features 79 light-filled loft residences that blend together the best of old and new with stylish metal accents that are a funky as they are functional.
The design team’s solution for adjoining the seemingly very different facades was to stitch them together using stainless steel “eyebrows” that essentially staple the two buildings together while also creating visual movement and interest.
Inside the loft apartments, 14-foot-high ceilings and large windows allow light to penetrate deep into the open floorplans. Designed with feng shui principles in mind, the elegant and minimalist interiors are characterized by light wood floors and a pale grey color palette that imbues residents with a feeling of Zen and serenity. Though simple in their lines, the kitchens and baths do impart a touch of luxury with their custom Italian cabinetry and fixtures by Schiffini and Nobili Spa.
Inhabbitat.com: Loft25 transforms an ink press into light-filled residences in Chelsea , by Yuka Yoneda, 03/08/16
Loft 25 is comprised of a previously existing building, and a new construction erected on the west side in 2006. The previously existing building is a prewar construction originally used as an ink press. The new building is seven storeys, and stands at half the height of the original building. The two buildings are tied thematically with extended stainless steel string courses, which project at slight angles from the façades.The new building contains the lobby, which features contemporary glass-work. The front of the new building is all glass. Architects from Traboscia Roiatti Studio designed the new building and integrated it with the old building. They have worked on other New York City projects such as 44 Mercer St, which demonstrate their ability to re-design and improve existing buildings, as well as their proficiency in use of glass to beautify exteriors.
Condopedia: Michael Gabrelsky, April 11 2013
“What better becomes, or freshens, an older masonry building than some stainless steel stringcourses and quoins and being a parent to a smaller modern building with a lot of shiny angularity? Such “cosmetics” might seem a bit showy, but will probably fit right in Chelsea .. The new building on the site is only about half the height of the older building, but the architects for the project, Traboscia Roiatti Studio, have tied the two buildings together thematically with extended stainless steel stringcourses that project at slight angles from the facades.”
Overlaps and alternating angles at Loft 25 in Chelsea. City Realty, Carter,September 06
The Feng-Shui philosophy that guided the building architecture also informed theinterior design. The lofts benefits from the generous floor height which informed the development slogan: living tall and from the varied and well equipped common spaces. The light mat wood flooring, glass concealedkitchens, pale grey and metallic bathroom tiles, all contribute to the light and airy feeling of the interiors.
Inhabitat.com: loft25-transforms-a-pre-war-ink-press-building-into-light-filled-residences-in-chelsea, by Yuka Yoneda, 03/08/16
Overlaps and alternating angles at Loft 25 in Chelsea
City Realty, Carter,September 06
Condopedia: Loft 25, April 11 2013, by Michael Gabrelsky