Chelsea Loft

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2008

WXY recently completed the renovation of this 4,000 square foot residential loft in the Flatiron District of Manhattan. Sustainability and budget were a priority for the clients, who needed a space suited to the daily life of themselves and their three children that would also provide a dramatic place for entertaining, both professionally and socially. Wherever possible materials were to be reused or recycled.

The goal of the design was to return the built-out loft to its original simple outlines, retrieving the desirable openness of the former industrial space and introducing sophisticated materials and details to create an engaging sequence. To achieve this, we took down walls and exposed the central axis of riveted steel columns and remade the original plaster ceiling. A kitchen was designed with eco-friendly units made of glass, under a dropped ceiling panel that seems to float, to form the loft’s new hub.

Planes of varied translucency define functional areas. They give a sense of organization to the open plan. Some, such as a stainless steel mesh screen and reused perforated-metal radiator covers, mediate the industrial aspects of the loft; others, especially fabric and acoustic panels, help lower noise levels, which are now a fraction of what they were before. The composition as a whole creates a series of dynamic visual relationships.

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