This newsletter, which focuses on Lower Manhattan, features a BGA project of topical interest to many of us, as well as exciting news about our ‘Office Move’ to the Financial District.
The recent onset of ‘Hurricane Joaquin’ brought to mind the severe impact of ‘Hurricane Sandy’ three years ago. Since ‘Sandy’ hit, both private and public sectors have been pooling their efforts to fortify New York’s structures and safeguard its residents and businesses.
BGA was privileged to lend its talents to a Flood Mitigation initiative undertaken at 2 Broadway, a Class-A commercial building in Lower Manhattan that is occupied by the NYC MTA, and managed by Transwestern Commercial Services, the Property and Project Management Company. This team effort undoubtedly helps to ensure that we will all rest a little more easily in the event of another storm.
BGA Office Move
BGA is thrilled to announce our move to 120 Broadway, a landmark building in the heart of New York’s Financial District. We are delighted to share with you the design challenges that we faced and, of course, our ingenious solutions!
We trust you will enjoy the architectural and interior design work in this issue, and we invite you to visit our new space and experience the unparalleled views of Lower Manhattan.
Alan Gaynor, AIA
MTA Mitigates 2 Broadway
Superstorm Sandy slammed New York City in October of 2012. At 2 Broadway, the Class-A commercial building in Lower Manhattan, occupied by the NYC MTA,
absorbed approximately 30 feet
of water in the basement.
Constructed in 1959, 2 Broadway was the first modernist structure erected in lower Manhattan and comprises 1.6 million square feet of premium office space and a mix of storefront retail spaces. Extensively renovated in 1999, it is managed by Transwestern Commercial Services, the Property and Project Management Company.
Under its lease, the NYC MTA is responsible for the upkeep and repairs to the downtown building. In the aftermath of Sandy and wary that such a so-called “100-year storm” could come again much sooner rather than later, the NYC MTA and Transwestern decided to institute a flood mitigation solution. Together they selected the Mechanical Engineering firm, DLB Associates who collaborated with Boddewyn Gaynor Architects and Raman + Oundjian Structural Engineers for the implementation of Phase I of the mitigation project.
BGA assembled documents for the architectural portion of the project, which included the installation of demountable, exterior flood barriers around the perimeter of 2 Broadway.
To accomplish our work, BGA surveyed the perimeter of the building, which has multiple exposures on Broadway, Beaver Street, Marketfield Street, Broad Street and Stone Street. Our team identified the points of vulnerability, such as: exterior vents and entrances, sidewalk grates, an underground parking garage, retail spaces, and mechanical and electrical equipment rooms in the basement.
The flood mitigation barriers at the building exterior were designed in accordance with the latest FEMA standards and based on the varied topography of the site, which slopes from Broadway downhill to Broad Street. The flood barrier elevation varied around the building thus requiring a range in barrier height from as little as four feet to as much as ten feet. Working with Presray, a supplier of flood mitigation products, we implemented a barrier system of interlocked planking.
In conjunction with DLB Associates, BGA designed the relocation of domestic water pumps to higher elevations within the basement and relocated the building’s emergency electrical systems.
The exterior flood barrier log system design required reinforcement back to the original building steel that necessitated the temporary removal of the façade granite panels at strategic points around the building perimeter.
This storm mitigation design project represents the first phase of a three-phase mitigation initiative that will protect 2 Broadway. The MTA plans torelocate the existing fire pump, sewage ejector pumps, the main steam station, and ventilation fans in Phase 2 of the Storm Mitigation project.
BGA Office Move
New Challenges, Creative Solutions
Michele and I are thrilled to announce that, after 28 years in our former SoHo location, we’ve moved our offices to the 40-story Equitable Building at 120 Broadway, in the heart of New York’s Financial District.
The Equitable Building, owned by Silverstein Properties, is a designated National Historic Landmark (1978) and a New York City Landmark (1996). It is the last structure built in New York City without setbacks from the street, and was the impetus for New York’s Zoning Code.
A move is always filled with excitement and a certain amount of trepidation. This was particularly true for us since our firm had spent nearly three decades in the high-ceilinged, loft-like space in the Historic SoHo Cast Iron District.
BGA’s challenge was to recreate the familiar loft-like feel of the former space in our new 36th floor location, which has smaller windows and significantly lower ceiling heights, but marvelous harbor views. Another challenge involved the need to develop an interesting architectural dynamic within a long, narrow office suite. In our role as architects and design experts, we heartily welcomed these challenges.
The most pronounced and compelling aspect of the design is the series of angled walls, in a saw tooth formation, which imparts a rhythm to the corridor. This formation links the reception and conference room to the studio space, the offices and the technical library. The angled walls are designed to serve as a backdrop to showcase photographs of our firm’s work, which are displayed throughout the space.
To re-create the open, airy loft-like space, BGA eliminated the suspended acoustical ceiling. We patched the exposed concrete slab throughout the corridors, studios, offices, library and pantry, and added pendant indirect LED lighting to maximize the sense of height. The pantry, which includes counters and seating, doubles as an employee lounge.
In the conference room, which is an enclosed space in the predominantly open-space floor plan, we introduced an inverted “V-shaped” ceiling which camouflages plumbing lines without lowering the overall ceiling height. The room offers state-of-the-art audio-video capability.
BGA incorporated LED Cove, Direct + Indirect Pendant lights throughout the office space to slice through the rooms, add dramatic emphasis, and brighten and expand each area. A key element of the lighting design was placement of the LEDs 18 inches below the ceiling in a recessed cove in the reception area and corridor. This placement directs the light upwards, creating the illusion of greater height and enhancing the sense of openness in the space. The highly energy-efficient LED lighting accents the bold geometry of the space and provides a sense of loft-like, high-ceilinged premises.
Amplifying the perception of openness, BGA selected a color palette of charcoal grey and white with pale green accents. The use of white paint on the walls, ceiling and base provides a dramatic contrast to the black carpets throughout the space, thus strengthening the visual impact of the architecture.
Ever mindful of budget constraints, we successfully incorporated our existing casegoods with new benching furniture in the studio space. The introduction of new seating in the conference room gave a fresh appearance to our granite conference room table.
Among the thrilling aspects of New York is that the city continually reinvents itself. Not long ago, the canyons of Wall Street became a ‘ghost town’ by 6:00 p.m. Today, the Financial District is fast becoming a burgeoning residential community, where families, children and pets of all kinds, shapes and sizes reside. It’s wonderful to be part of this vibrant, historic neighborhood, with its vast and impressive background, both historically and architecturally.
We are delighted with our new location along the Canyon of Heroes, where so many worthy individuals, sports teams, events and achievements have been heralded and celebrated. And, we’re equally delighted with the exceptional space we’ve created. We extend a hearty welcome to you to visit our new offices and experience this historic area.
Meet Project Manager Michael Ankuda, AIA
The architectural community has a vast cadre of talented project managers. And then there’s Michael Ankuda, the project manager’s project manager; the professional’s professional.
With more than 35 years of experience, Michael is a technically savvy and seasoned professional, who brings a unique set of talents and skills to projects of all types. That experience encompasses a multitude of initiatives involving building conversions and additions, educational, medical, retail, public agency, institutional and landmarks, including the Baseball Hall of Fame in Cooperstown, New York.
A fair but no-nonsense task master, Michael has high expectations of his team and he knows how to keep a project on schedule. His keen eye for detail is evident when examining field conditions, enabling him to anticipate issues before they arise and to provide appropriate solutions. In fact, BGA’s reputation for producing tight, rigorous contract documents stems, in part, from Michael’s exacting attention to detail. His characteristic “deep-concentration pose” is apparent whenever his hands are propped against his head, a pencil is behind his ear, and he is intently studying the drawings.
A recent BGA project spearheaded by Michael involves the replacement of nearly eight miles of glass in approximately 5,000 windows in the Starrett-Lehigh building, a Landmark building on Manhattan’s Far West Side. To quote our client…”Boddewyn Gaynor’s team was deft in their approach and displayed an aptitude for detail that proved to be the difference in obtaining Landmarks approval to proceed on one of the largest facades + window replacement projects…”.
Further evidence of Michael’s skill and inventiveness is apparent in comments from the property manager of Transwestern Commercial Services, which oversees 2 Broadway, a Lower Manhattan building occupied by the NYC MTA that was severely impacted by Hurricane Sandy: “The MTA Storm Mitigation project demanded outside-the-box thinking. Rarely had something like this been done before in Lower Manhattan. We were forced to be pioneers and Michael Ankuda of BGA had the vision to help us make it happen. Michael’s flexibility and imagination made him a most valuable member of our team…I don’t think we could have done it without him.”
What does Michael do in his spare time when he is not problem-solving professionally? Always up for a challenge, Michael enjoys restoring wooden boats. You may find him along the Hudson River sailing a restored gem and enjoying the sun, the sea and the salt air!
BGA is proud of the work Michael Ankuda has done, and continues to do for our firm. We are enthusiastic that he is a part the BGA family and we want to share that enthusiasm with you.
BODDEWYN GAYNOR ARCHITECTS, d.p.c.
120 Broadway, Suite 3654
New York, NY 10271
Boddewyn Gaynor Architects understands that your needs evolve steadily, and we make certain we can adapt to them. By continually educating ourselves about the latest trends and changes, we can hit the ground running to integrate new, value-added features to our work and to your spaces. We’re continually finding fresh
and different ways to meet the challenges you face.
At all times, we keep your objectives, budgets and timelines uppermost in our minds.
“The MTA Storm Mitigation project demanded outside-the-box thinking. Rarely had something like this been done before in Lower Manhattan.
We were forced to be pioneers and Michael Ankuda of BGA had the vision to help us make it happen. Michael’s flexibility and imagination made him a most valuable member of our team…
I don’t think we could have done it without him.”
Ms. Yvonne Saavedra Limb, Director of Project Mgt.