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01.22.2013
Living Small
nArchitects wins adAPT NYC micro-apartment design competition.
Courtesy NYC Mayors Office

Mayor Bloomberg named a local design team—nARCHITECTS, Monadnock Development, and Actors Fund Housing Development Corporation—as the winner of New York City’s adAPT NYC Competition. In July, Mayor Bloomberg and Housing Preservation and Development Commissioner Mathew M. Wambua asked architects to think big but on a small scale by developing a micro-unit apartment housing model on a city-owned site—and that’s exactly what nARCHITECTS did when they conceived of “My Micro NY,” a 55-unit building that will offer affordable and bite-size housing, made up of units ranging between 250 and 375-square-feet.

Living units include multi-purpose spaces, high ceilings, and Juliette balconies.
 

After reviewing thirty-tree submissions from firms across the country, Bloomberg said they chose the design that made “innovative use of compact space” and was also “attractive, livable, and offered competitive priced rents.” The Museum of the City of New York will present the submissions from four notable teams at a new exhibit, Making Room: New Models for Housing New Yorkers, that includes: Jonathan Rose Companies, Curtis + Ginsburg, and Grimshaw; Durst Organization and Dattner Architects; Blesso Properties, Bronx Pro, Hollwich Kushner, James McCullar Architecture, and Handel Architects; Abby Hamlin, Chrystie Street Development, Rogers Marvel Architects, Future Expansion Architects, and Community Solutions. 

The building will be one of the first multi-family building developed using modular construction in Manhattan. And like Atlantic Yards’ B2 development, it will be pre-fabricated at the Brooklyn Navy Yard.

 
Floor plans (left) and a diagram (right) of the units. Click to enlarge.
 

Eric Bunge, principal of nARCHITECTS, described the design layout as a “canvas and a toolbox,” which will provide plenty of light with 9’-10’’ floor-to-ceiling heights and Juliette balconies. Within the building, residents will have access to common spaces, a rooftop garden, a shared lounge, and a fitness room.

The city enlisted the help of leaders in the architecture field to provide feedback on the submissions, which included Maya Lin of Maya Lin Studio; Richard Plunz, Director the Urban Design Program at Columbia University; Barry Bergdoll, Chief Curator of Arhcitecture & Design at Museum of Modern Art, and Bjarke Ingels, architect and founding partner of BIG-Bjark Ingels Group.

Nicole Anderson

 

Rendering of nArchitects' winning micro-apartment proposal, "My Micro NYC" (above). Rendering showing how the prefabricated modular units will be stacked during the construction process (below).