SHoP takes timber to Manhattan

Nick Myall
Friday 29 Jan 2016

A timber-framed condominium is planned for Manhattan’s West Chelsea neighbourhood immediately opposite the High Line

130-134 Holdings LLC, in partnership with SHoP Architects, Arup, Icor Associates, and environmental consultancy Atelier Ten have proposed 475 West 18th in New York, USA.  A ten-storey, timber-framed residential condominium building, which is a transformative and sustainable prototype for the design and construction industry. The design takes an innovative approach going beyond the limited palette of materials and systems normally used in high-rise construction. The use of wood, a locally sourced and renewable material, provides a low-carbon, more economically sound building solution.

Located in Manhattan’s West Chelsea neighbourhood immediately opposite the High Line, the building will contain fifteen two-, three-, and four-bedroom apartments. To celebrate the unique nature of the project, the timber structure will be exposed where appropriate, exhibiting its natural beauty and strength. The extensive use of other wood products throughout will help set ambitious sustainability targets in design, construction, and operation.

475 West 18th’s extensive use of wood structural elements and other wood products allows the team to set ambitious sustainability targets in the building’s design, construction, and operation. By combining aggressive load reduction with energy efficient systems, the project team anticipates reducing overall energy consumption by at least 50% relative to current energy codes. As a renewable material, mass wood also acts to sequester carbon—approximately one ton of carbon per cubic meter —which offers an exciting new tool for designers. It will target LEED Platinum certification, as well as pursue higher levels of sustainability not captured in the LEED system.

The building will be the first in New York City to use modern mass wood systems, and will be the tallest building in the city to use structural timber, pending approvals from the New York City Department of Buildings.

Nick Myall

News Editor

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