Brodsky Receives Residential Architect Design Award from Architect Magazine
Into a daunting site in New York’s Morningside neighborhood, alongside the north flank of the hulking Neo-Gothic church St. John the Divine, Handel Architects has designed an apartment building that somehow manages to be equal parts eye-catching and self- effacing. Enclave at the Cathedral is a 430-unit apartment house that is 15 stories tall and scarcely a quarter block wide. To thread this challenging urban needle, the designers created a lateral façade, composed largely of vertical concrete piers, that ensures the focus remains on St. John’s stunning westwork. Meanwhile, to the north and south, the architects devised a dramatic ribbed exterior that plainly references the muscular structural systems of the church’s Gothic Revival architecture. This air of deference extends to Enclave’s silhouette, which steps down slightly as it approaches its neighbor. And rather than plunk down a single bulky structure, Handel divided the project into two buildings to leave the church’s north transept exposed.
When you’re designing these large multifamily buildings, you’re always trying to find a way to differentiate them. The architects created a dynamic façade that is really successful, especially in the way it relates to the church. —Juror Danielle Tillman