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Impressed by Manhattanhenge, Scalar Architects transforms getting old Kips Bay constructing with a glowing facade


Taking the title of the photo voltaic phenomenon ‘Manhattanhenge’, Scalar Structure’s lately accomplished facade intervention in Kips Bay brings a dynamic relationship between facade and daylight to a Twentieth-century constructing. The brick and cast-iron constructing—initially accomplished in 1915—is dwelling to The Nuthouse, a beloved 24-hour neighborhood ironmongery store. After falling into disrepair, Scalar Structure wanted to handle not solely facade upkeep, however sought to maximise the potential of daylight on a slim Manhattan avenue.

The constructing was accomplished following a 12-year-long course of, which initially included an all-glass facade. Working with the consumer—who wished “extra native management to experiment with development supplies and strategies”—Scalar Structure sought to ascertain a geometrically distinctive facade. As Scalar Structure principal Julio Salcedo defined, “the facade orientation dealing with North, North East alongside its industrial use have been key determinants within the design impetus to facilitate indirect relationships to the road and photo voltaic azimuth.” 

Elevation photo of a glass and metal facade
The panels have been mechanically fixed to the forged iron, circumventing the necessity for welding, which forged iron isn’t effectively suited to. (Miguel de Guzman @ Imagen Subliminal)

Challenges got here in designing an envelope across the constructing’s authentic forged iron columns. The design workforce began with a fiberglass substructure, which considerably restricted thermal bridging and may very well be connected to forged iron with mechanical fasteners. This construction was crammed with dense insulation and holds the pvc multi-glazed window wall with a Ug of 0.3 W/(m2K). The home windows have been put in to be operable, offering air flow throughout many of the yr.

close up of metal and glass facade
Excessive-performing glass home windows are additionally operable, offering pure air flow. (Miguel de Guzman @ Imagen Subliminal)

When it got here to panel choice, cautious consideration needed to be given to the quantity of weight placed on the prevailing forged iron and brick. Molded fiberglass and concrete fiber panels posed challenges to this, and as Salcedo stated, “the selection of fenestration additional decided the end and colour.  The composite steel panels offered an integral end each reflective and sturdy.” The composite steel panels that have been in the end chosen have been lighter, may very well be fabricated domestically, and included a excessive proportion of recycled materials.

Diagram of facade components
Element elements of the facade spotlight the completed merchandise geometric complexity (Courtesy of Scalar Structure)

Working with B&B Sheet Metallic, Scalar Structure developed mock ups and full scale fashions of the steel panels. The design workforce “targeted on the volumetric intent of the design,” stated Salcedo, working via a number of iterations of panels. Digitally reduce, the panels have been grooved on their bottom with a view to accommodate folds. The folding offered the rigidity wanted for a skinny steel, bridged connections to the prevailing constructing, and created the distinctive geometry that allowed for the interaction between daylight and the facade that Scalar Structure desired. 

New metal panel facade on an old building
(Miguel de Guzman @ Imagen Subliminal)

Architects: Scalar Structure

Completion Date: September 2021

Location: New York Metropolis

Mica Panels Composite Metallic panel / PE by Alpolic

Drutex PVC Iglo Vitality home windows 

Enduro Tuff Span Structural Fiberglass  



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