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Newest High Line eyecatcher is a vision of reality.

With all the excitement surrounding the redevelopment of Tenth and Eleventh Avenues along the proposed High Line Park, architects have been keen to design buildings that will stand out from what's become a crowded playing field.

While the innovative use of construction materials and unusual building massing might up the ante on the competition, how can architects translate those designs utilizing innovative materials and building techniques into reality and still come within budget?

Just such a challenge arose last year for Della Valle + Bernheimer, a Brooklyn-based architectural firm, when it was selected by developer Metro Development/Grasso Holdings to design a 21-unit luxury condominium building at 245 Tenth Avenue and West 24th Street, on a site abutting the High Line.

The designers' answer was to hire Goshow Architects as Architect of Record to help translate their ideas for the project into a complete construction package that also adhered to the developer's budget and maintained the design architect's vision.

Della Valle + Bernheimer's design concept certainly creates a unique structure. Referencing the High Line's industrial origins as an elevated freight train rail track, the design cloaks the facade in a combination of perforated metal and tinted glass whose pattern is derived from the digital manipulation of images of locomotive steam clouds.

Complicating the design further, the building angles outward from its base to the seventh floor to create visual interest at key portions of the building's massing.

Goshow Architects was brought on board as Architect of Record because of its excellent track record of constructing, renovating and restoring a wide variety of building types in New York City. The firm is known for both the quality of its aesthetic judgment and technical expertise as well as its in-depth knowledge of zoning, regulations, building specifications, value engineering and cost estimating.

Goshow Architects also works through collaboration, and for the Tenth Avenue project they brought their extensive expertise to the weekly meetings with the Della Valle + Bernheimer design team and the developer to build consensus about how to evolve the digital images into an integrated, buildable whole.

During the initial design phase, Goshow Architects conducted extensive research into manufacturers, materials and component parts to determine which elements best matched the design criteria. This process involved extensive consultation with a broad team of engineering firms and other specialist sub-consultants to find the most cost effective solutions that maintain the design objectives. They also presented the design team and the developers with viable alternatives if the first round of selections was deemed too costly.

With the primary elements of the facade and exterior skin selected, Goshow Architects is now creating a fully comprehensive set of construction drawings that fine tune Della Valle + Bernheimer's design down to the smallest detail, maintain the design integrity and translate it into comprehensive instructions for the construction team.

"I think this will be an exceptional building when it's finished," claims Steven Derasmo, Goshow Architect's senior project manager.

The 11-story, 58,000 s/f project is slated for completion by September 2007. In addition to the 21 residential units, which range in size from 1,500 s/f to 3,000s/f, there will be 6,300 s/f of retail gallery space at ground level, terraces for the residents at the second floor and penthouse apartments will offer both intimate views and a visual connection to the High Line as well as spectacular views of the City and the Hudson River.
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Publication:Real Estate Weekly
Geographic Code:1USA
Date:Oct 4, 2006
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