A Townhouse with a Climate Skin that achieves 45% annual energy savings
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The goal of this conversion of a former industrially zoned building into this spacious 8 story residential townhouse in SoHo rethought how a building could actively contribute to a more sustainable urban realm.
By adding a large extension onto an existing building with a modest footprint of 19 x 40 feet, we converted the building into an 8-story townhouse for 1 family, wrapped by a spacious lattice envelope functioning as a climate skin, a third ‘building’ that also encloses the balconies at the front facade and the terraces created by the NYC required setbacks.
A glass elevator and black steel stairs connect the 8 floors with connective voids that allow for a fluid living environment. The highly recognizable climate envelope, whose spatial and performative properties serve as an adaptable perimeter of the building, is made from a lightweight steel frame and folding Tesla slats. This skin can be opened and closed with ease to moderate heating and cooling effects and adds new exterior spaces in different, variable conditions.
The innovative folding envelope not only enlarges the building envelope, it also modulates exposure to passively regulate internal temperatures, resulting in a total annual energy savings of up to 45%. The up-cycling of wood beams taken out to created double height spaces into window sills and bookcases, and exposing of existing structures re-creates the building's illustrious past. The extensions multiple skylights allow for natural daylight & ventilation further reducing energy costs.