January 5, 2018

Developers Implement A Return to the Classics

A Return to the Classics: NYC Developers Forego Glass & Steel for the Classic and Refined

by New York Spaces

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145 President; Photograph by Arc Media.

A Return to the Classics: NYC Developers Forego Glass & Steel for the Classic and Refined

With glass and steel towers dotting many a street corner, New York has never appeared more like an urban jungle. Architecture, it seems, has only gotten more futuristic, leaving a shiny, metallic city in its wake that feels worlds apart from what it was even decades ago. Stately stone buildings and homes, though, still offer visions of grandeur and recall a different era of sophistication. A time when skilled masonry work and a handcrafted aesthetic signified utter luxury.

Not at all forgotten, a trend is slowly taking root among some of today's developers and a return to classic building materials is making a comeback. From handmade brick to elegant limestone, these buildings aim to provide the appeal of a pre-war building, but with all of the comforts and conveniences in today's luxury homes. Take a peek at the dream-worthy homes below to see the latest interpretations of the classics.

The Kent; Photograph: Williams New York.

145 President

Situated in the heart of historic Carroll Gardens is 145 President, a rare new condominium that just launched sales in September. Designed and developed by Avery Hall Investments, a prolific young development firm known for its successful Brooklyn buildings, the firm's design team took extreme care to create a building and aesthetic that is both timeless and warm, and that resonates with the location. With a nod to the surrounding architecture, the decision was made to utilize handmade Danish bricks by acclaimed brickworks Petersen Tegl. Being handmade, each brick differs slightly in size, color and texture, thus providing the facade with great dimension and depth as well as a connection to the neighborhood's past.

211 Schermerhorn
211 Schermerhorn; Photograph by Arc Media.


The Kent, designed by Beyer Binder Belle is a modern take on the classic prewar building. The classic brick and limestone facade is punctuated by oversized windows and crowned by a series of steel and glass lanterns. The large-scale windows are designed to maximize views of the city and integrate ample daylight into the interiors. The building is shaped by a series of graceful setbacks, chamfered corners and careful articulation of the facade that culminates in a decorative metal, glass and masonry crown at the top of the building. The site's four full exposures and prominent corner location created a unique design opportunity. Architecturally integrated metal and glass lanterns illuminate the building's tower and elements of the lantern continue down to the base, modulating the street walls and massing to relate to the neighboring buildings.


211 Schermerhorn, a boutique Boerum Hill condominium, features a custom aesthetic by renowned architect

20 East End Avenue
20 East End Avenue; Photograph by Hayes Davidson.

Morris Adjmi. Adjmi, who famously made his mark on Williamsburg with the conversion of an old factory building into the celebrated Wythe Hotel, was inspired by Boerum Hill's historic architecture and old-world charm when imagining the look of 211 Schermerhorn. His team selected a handcrafted Petersen brick façade and designed generously scaled casement-style windows that seamlessly blend with surrounding styles of the neighborhood dating back to the 1800's.


180 East 88th Street
180 East 88th Street; Photograph by March Made for DDG.

Located in the heart of one of the most coveted neighborhoods of Manhattan, 20 East End Avenue is a boutique amenity-rich condominium designed inside and out by Robert A.M. Stern Architects. The buildings design concept embodies a modern interpretation of classic pre-war architecture, with an intricate brick and handset grey Indiana limestone façade. Many residences feature oversized bay windows to maximize each home's natural light and views of the skyline and East River, Juliet balconies, and numerous setback roof terraces.


Situated in the Upper East Side's coveted Carnegie Hill neighborhood, 180 East 88th Street is a striking

151 Wooster; Photograph by KUB Capital.

condominium being developed, designed and constructed by national real estate firm DDG. The company's first Uptown project, 180 East 88th is inspired by the pre-war boom in high-rise masonry construction in New York during the 1920s - 1940s and DDG's design team paid homage to the lost art of traditional craftsmanship while maintaining a modern aesthetic. The property's facade features nearly 600,000 handmade bricks from Petersen Tegl in Denmark. These distinctive bricks, which include the elegant, elongated Kolumba style, possess a thoroughly unique texture and color palette that reflect their handmade quality. The artisanal nature of 180 East 88th Street's facade not only provides a welcome contrast to many of today's steel and glass towers, but also provides a point of resonance with many of the pre-war buildings dotting the Upper East Side, while maintaining a modern twist.


150 Wooster Street is an extremely rare ground-up development on one of the last remaining lots in Soho's Cast-Iron Historic District. The building's contemporary masonry façade references the neighborhood's landmark prestige and is clad in imported Danish brick, handcrafted and stamped using 19th century techniques, and framed by piers of rustic Indiana limestone that accentuate large uninterrupted expanses of glass. At the 7th floor, the facade transitions into precision cut steel paneling and cornices that take classic Soho as a point of departure. 150 Wooster was developed and designed entirely in-house by KUB, a firm based in Soho.

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