As the exponential growth continues to emanate from Manhattan, the center of New York City, to the surrounding boroughs, more luxury developments are beginning to rise all over the city. Think of the annual growth rings of trees and you’ll be able to visualize the constant expansion of developments throughout NYC. With the constant search for prime land to build the next luxury condominium skyscraper, the risks that developers used to see in one property can change in the blink of an eye.
Eventually, a developer with a fascination in a particular type of building form, structure, material, aesthetic, and sustainable awareness will take a risk and explore new possibilities with their next development.
With this in mind, the theoretical Residential Timber Skyscraper project focuses on using timber as the primary structure of the skyscraper which is beginning to emerge as a possibility for architecture around the world. What would a timber skyscraper look like in a place like NYC? Where could a luxury residential development be located in NYC?
Searching through NYC for a prime parcel to locate a luxury residential skyscraper led to one location that was very surprising to find. Located at 6 W 111th Street, this parcel is currently a parking lot across the street from the northeast corner of Central Park adjacent to the Duke Ellington Circle. This was surprising because the other three corners of Central Park are filled with prominent skyscrapers and stores. It’s only a matter of decades before this area is purchased and skyscrapers begin to rise.
This project is an exploration of wood as the primary structure for a residential skyscraper located in NYC. The proposal would use a combination of a reinforced concrete base that would serve as underground parking and enclose the public programs on the ground floor of the building. Above would be a combination of timber columns, reinforced concrete beams, and laminated timber shear walls.
Throughout the façade of the building, balconies are offset on every floor to provide all tenants access to an outdoor space for fresh air. A vertical wood slat rainscreen covers the entire building while acting as a handrail at the balconies as well as a shading and fall protective device at the sliding doors within all apartments.
Every condominium in the building has a generous amount of space that is rare to find in NYC. There are two types of 1 bedroom units that offer a full bedroom, large master bathroom, two balconies, large living room, and kitchen with an island. On the upper floors of the building, there are two types of 3 bedroom units that offer a massive kitchen and dining space, four balconies, a master suite, and two bedrooms that share a common space and bathroom.
On the ground floor of the building, public retail spaces will be located along the Duke Ellington Circle. The main entrance for the residents will be on the north side of the building, which is more private than the traffic circle side. Tenants will have access to an outdoor space that overlooks the northeast of Central Park and the Duke Ellington Circle of the second floor. Located within the tower on the second floor, there will be a full gym and building office. All other upper floors are luxury condominiums.