The New York City Rescue Mission, now and then, from http://www.nycrescue.org.
The New York City Rescue Mission provides both short- and long-term support services for the city’s homeless, from housing, to food, to counseling. Through their new campaign “Make them Visible,” the Mission focuses on exposing how most of us see homeless people on the street. The project was featured on Huffington Post.
The production dressed up people in ragged garb and placed them on a sidewalk, knowing that relatives or spouses would pass. Every person they secretly taped walked right on by; in the most startling instance, a man looked his wife of 34 years. She was wrapped in blankets and had costume makeup on, but she was certainly recognizable. You might want to have a tissue handy when you watch the reactions of the passers-by when they realize that they overlooked their loved ones.
The aim of this social experiment seeks to “put a face to homelessness,” and urges us all to not dehumanize people we pass on the street. The Mission’s website also offers portraits of homeless individuals: George likes rock music; Stanley has a secret recipe for lasagna; and Sean watches history shows. Through these tidbits, the Mission hopes to recast our expectations and stereotypes of people who have no home.
EKSW/A is proud to play a part to help our city’s underserved populations. 4380 Bronx Blvd provides 109 beds to homeless men in the Bronx; True Colors Residence in Harlem permanently houses formerly homeless LGBT youth, and we are currently working to build another such facility in the Bronx.
The NYC Rescue Mission is located on the same block as our office, and we salute the good work they do every day.
From Left: 4380 Bronx Blvd. (two images), True Colors Residence, True Colors Residence: Bronx.
After almost five years at ESKW/A, Grace Lee is moving to the sunny shores of the west coast. We will miss her dearly here in the office and wish her the very best in her future endeavors. Grace has been a strong design contributor to every project she’s touched and was a driving force for St. Lucy’s Housing, Hour Children Apartments III, and Maison Gerard. Her work on True Colors Residence, Central Park West, Blitzer, and countless RFPs was integral to their successes. Grace is leaving to be nearer to her mother and sisters, and probably most importantly, her adorable nephew.
Good luck to you, Grace! And please keep in touch!
by Janine Sutton
I was honored to represent ESKW/A at the 2nd Annual Boston Society Of Architects (BSA) Awards Gala. We are proud that our project True Colors Residence for non-profit West End Residences was honored with a BSA Design Citation Award in the Housing Category. The sold-out event brought designers, collaborators, contractors, engineers, and owners together for an inspiring night to celebrate excellence in design. Festively decorated, the Grand Ballroom of the Boston Marriot Copely Place hosted an opportunity to meet other architects and professionals in related fields.
The photos of the winning projects scrolled on two large projection screens throughout the evening, giving every attendee a taste of the diverse practices and honored buildings. It was exciting to see True Colors Residence among them.
Jane Thompson received the BSA Award of Honor. Her inspiring speech touched on her diverse career, from working with Walter Gropius, to the instantly successful Faneuil Hall Marketplace in Boston, to waterfront revitalization projects around the world.
The Gala was great fun, an inspiring night, and a good excuse to get dressed up! It is gratifying to be recognized by our peers for work with clients whose social missions continue to inspire us.
All photos in this post were used with permission from the BSA. All ©2013 Ben Gebo Photography.
The True Colors Residence was referenced in Rachel Aviv’s “Netherland” article in The New Yorker Magazine, published December 10th, 2012. We are proud to work with West End Residences who does amazing work to support homeless LGBT youth, an underserved group in New York City. “Netherland” follows the story of Samantha, a runaway who found a home at True Colors, and her transition from the streets to permanent housing.
“In September, 2011, the state’s first permanent subsidized apartment building for homeless gay, lesbian, and transgender youth opened. The building, called True Colors, was co-founded by Cyndi Lauper, had had been troubled by all the L.G.B.T. teens on the Christopher Street Pier who seemed to have nowhere else to go. Samantha happened to meet a caseworker the day that the building began accepting applications, and was one of the first to apply. Only a few weeks before her housing interview, she had been hired to do outreach work for another youth agency – a paying job. She signed a lease that limited her rent to thirty per cent of her annual income, or two hundred and eighty-six dollars a month.”
With a New Yorker subscription, you can read the entire article here.
Continuing the mission of creating a similar facility in every borough, West End Residences and ESKW/A are moving forward with a True Colors Residence in the Bronx. Check back for updates.
Happy New Year from all of us at Edelman Sultan Knox Wood / Architects!
As we wrap up 2012, we would like to take a moment to reflect on the year that was. We have many things to be proud of: we launched this blog, completed some amazing projects, commenced construction on some exciting projects, and on a more personal note celebrated Whitney’s retirement, Janine’s move to Boston, and Tatjana’s departure to be with her new baby. All in all, we feel 2012 was a banner year and can’t wait to top it in 2013. Here are some highlights:
JANUARY: ESKW/A launches our Blog
Last year we announced our re-launched website and the ESKW/A blog – a new adventure that has proved to be a solid showcase for details of our projects as well as a way to connect with our architectural community in New York City. Claire’s popular post An Afternoon with Judith Edelman explored the rich history of our firm. We have enjoyed highlighting our work in the office, and recently featured Grace and Daughtry’s efforts at St. Lucy’s Housing. Kimberly continued to act as managing editor even as she welcomed her second child, Luke, into the world. We invite you to follow the ESKW/A blog by clicking the “follow” button at the top of the page.
FEBRUARY: Whitney Retires
If you’ve called the office in the past year, you’ve noticed a change: Whitney Merritt, our office manager for the past 40 years, has retired. She is no longer here to greet you with her trademark, “EDELMAN SULTAN”. We miss her dearly, thank her for her many years of dedication to the office, and wish her an amazing retirement in South Carolina with her grandsons. Meanwhile, we were pleased to welcome Lauretta da Cruz – the sister of our wonderful comptroller Lucille – as our new office manager.
MARCH: Team works on Prospect Plaza III RFP
Andrew, Francisco, Grace, and Claire worked deep in collaboration with Settlement Housing Fund and Briarwood on the Prospect Plaza III RFP for the New York City Housing Authority. The office came together in numerous charrettes, seeking a design solution for this site undergoing revitalization in Brownsville, Brooklyn.
APRIL: 4380 Bronx Boulevard commences construction + Tatjana leaves
Andrew and Philip are working on an exciting building for Project Renewal. 4380 Bronx Boulevard was formerly used as a manufacturing facility, but is now being converted into a men’s homeless shelter with 108 beds. The design features five torqued skylights which fill the upper floor dormitory space with light and air. The shelter is on track to open this May.
In April, we also said goodbye to Tatjana as she welcomed her second child Kalin into the world and took a break from being full-time architect to be full-time mom. Her work on projects such as 4380 Bronx Boulevard and True Colors Residences is greatly appreciated by the office, and we wish her much happiness and joy with her wonderful little boys.
MAY: The team designs Captain Post
For those who know the long history that many projects in the non-profit housing world have, you can appreciate our celebration of a project that has floated around the office for almost five years. Moses, Kimberly, and Randy picked up schematic design on Captain Post for Clinton Housing Development Company. The long-vacant historic factory building on 52nd Street will be fully renovated with a small addition and will provide twenty-two affordable housing units.
JULY: BxC under construction
Kimberly and Jun welcomed the start of construction on the Bronx Community Charter School which is expanding into a 30,000 sq. feet within a new building on Webster Avenue. Working with LOM Properties and Joy Construction, the new school will host a variety of unconventional learning spaces including nooks for each grade level and “front porches” for each classroom. BxC is slated to open in 2013.
AUGUST: St. Lucy’s Houses + True Colors Residence
Grace and Daughtry kicked off construction on the St. Lucy’s Houses in Harlem. Working with Phipps Houses and Notias Construction Inc., the construction commenced and has been moving along well towards completion in Fall 2013.
True Colors Residence in West Harlem, provides permanent supportive housing for formerly homeless LGBT youth. We are proud to announce that the building won a housing design award from the Boston Society of Architects, as well as a design award from the Society of Registered Architects. We salute Randy, Tatjana, and Ari’s hard work on this groundbreaking project. We look forward to working with West End Residences on the next True Colors Residence in the Bronx in the new year.
SEPTEMBER: NSCC opens
A collaboration with Dattner Architects, New Settlement Community Center in the Bronx is part school (housing a Primary School and an Intermediate / High School) and part Community Center. NSCC opened its doors just this past fall, and has already become deeply integrated into the community. At the ribbon cutting ceremony, various members from the Bronx and public officials, including Bronx Borough President Ruben Diaz, praised the school as a beacon for a revitalizing area. ESKW shouts out to all staff who contributed to the success of this project, past and present, including Alyssa, Amber, and Kelly who contributed tremendously to the project.
OCTOBER: Hour Apartment House III + Janine’s Goodbye
All new construction projects rightly celebrate when they get out of the ground, but Randy, Fialka and Grace had true cause for celebration when foundations and block walls of Hour Apartment House III, rose above the ground plane. The project for Hour Children is a residence in Queens that will provide permanent affordable housing for formerly incarcerated women together with their children.
We were sad to bid farewell to Janine Sutton who had been at the firm for over seven years. Some highlights of her work include Eco-Restroom, 6 Columbus, Phelps House, LaMattina Wildlife Ambassador Center at the Bronx Zoo, and ECHO Apartments. She has moved to Boston and currently works at EYP Architects. We wish her great happiness, success, and many return visits to ESKW/A.
NOVEMBER: Thanksgiving + the Mary Spink Residences
Per our tradition, we broke work a little early the day before the holiday early to celebrate together and give thanks. Everyone contributed to the amazing spread (Lauretta’s cheesecake was a hit), but Jun failed on his promise to cook a turkey with a blow torch. In these still-tough economic times, we are grateful that we can continue to do meaningful work in the public sector while still growing our business.
Andrew and Kerry were excited to have construction kick off on the Mary Spink Residence for the Lower East Side People’s Mutual Housing, a supportive housing residence for mentally ill New Yorkers. The building will provide supportive housing and services for forty-six (46) residents.
DECEMBER: Denton Green + the New York Aquarium
December saw the successful construction closing of Denton Green Houses, a facility for senior citizens in Nassau County, which is receiving a comprehensive renovation, new entrance drive, enlivened façade treatment, and new elevators. Daughtry led the ESKW/A team through the project and looks forward to starting the construction phase. Watch for updates.
Randy, Cary, Michael, and Jun are hard at work on preparing plans for the New York Aquarium Assessment. In the devastating aftermath of hurricane Sandy, one of the areas hardest hit was the coastline near Coney Island, and the team is preparing drawings for the Aquarium’s renovation. Of course, they are also working on new Sharks! Exhibit, opening in 2015.
That’s our brief look back at 2012. We wish you all the best this holiday season, and look forward to seeing you in 2013!