Architects: COOKFOX Architects
Project: 150 Charles Street Condominium
Location: New York City, New York, United States
Photography: Bilyana Dimitrova
A remarkable site overlooking the expanse of the waterfront, 150 Charles Street is sited between the activity on the Hudson River and the history of the West Village.
The building incorporates the abandoned Whitehall warehouse, a massive, utilitarian structure of concrete, brick, and glass. The grid of the warehouse is maintained in the new building, with each bay defining separate townhomes on Charles and West 10th Streets. Individual, residential entries create new connections at the street level, activating the sidewalk with foot traffic. Retaining the streetwall as both a connection to the pedestrian scale and the neighborhood’s past, 150 Charles Street Condominium creates a vibrant streetscape and the highest-quality living environment for its residents.
A vision of weaving new development into the natural and historic environment of the West Village has shaped this project from the outset. Modern logic typically would balance a residential tower within a park, yet 150 Charles Street Condominium asserts that new growth can thoroughly integrate nature into the built environment. The resulting building is a careful composition of stacked volumes that gradually setback, preserving the neighborhood’s scale and romantic character. Where the warehouse’s tarred roof once occupied the majority of the block, two terraced, landscaped volumes now surround a lush central courtyard.
Incorporating ideas of biophilia – our inherent connection to the environment – access to nature throughout the building is related to themes of prospect (wide, open views) and refuge (safe and protected interior spaces). 150 Charles combines the best of the West Village townhouse garden view and the waterfront high-rise river view with cascading terraces designed as a “fifth facade” Integral to the experience of the building, 150 Charles has over 30,000 square feet of landscaped space distributed throughout lush green rooftops, planted terraces and courtyards – truly defining the term “superior landscaping”. This is more composed green space than Abingdon Square Park, Christopher Square Park and the Jefferson Market Garden combined.
150 Charles is more than a sum of its parts; it is a building crafted for a particular time and place, evoking a scale and texture characteristic of the neighborhood. Just as good streets are needed to bring neighborhoods to life, 150 Charles embodies an essential engagement with nature and the vibrancy of the West Village streetscape.