Brooklyn Condominium Brought Up to Code, Now Ready for Sale

By Erika Schnitzer, Associate EditorBrooklyn—Scarano Architects PLLC has helped to bring Olive Park, a seven-story, 87-unit luxury condominium development located at 100 Maspeth Ave. in Brooklyn, up to code and ready for sale.Brought in as troubleshooters, Scarano Architects helped developer Aron Deutsch and George Schwartz Architects complete the project without having to start from the…

By Erika Schnitzer, Associate EditorBrooklyn—Scarano Architects PLLC has helped to bring Olive Park, a seven-story, 87-unit luxury condominium development located at 100 Maspeth Ave. in Brooklyn, up to code and ready for sale.Brought in as troubleshooters, Scarano Architects helped developer Aron Deutsch and George Schwartz Architects complete the project without having to start from the beginning, explains Robert M. Scarano, Jr., AIA, FARA, ALA, president and principal architect at Scarano Architects.Under Department of Building zoning laws, the building was required to be set back 15 ft. from the street, based upon its height. The team would have been required to remove the exterior wall structure and apartments that occupied the first 15 ft. on the street to comply with this setback, Scarano explains. “We offered to look at it and discovered that the initial evaluation that was done wasn’t correct in that the request to set the building back wasn’t really necessary to be made because in this instance other buildings were closer to the street within 150 ft. of this property,” he asserts. “That being said, we have had success with trying to create the appearance of a street wall and the integrity of a streetwall with the use of structural element designs and screening.”To remedy the problem, Scarano designed colonnades along the perimeters of the building to create the 15-ft. setback required by the New York City Planning Commission. “It turned out to be an aesthetically nice solution; it broke up the somewhat monotonous façade that didn’t have much articulation to begin with,” notes Scarano. “The structural grillage had the effect of breaking down the mass and the building felt less monumental, and it was well received by those who saw it.” While the masonry columns are structural, they also provide an architectural element that accentuates the delineations in the masonry design and successfully create a setback along the façade. Interestingly, notes Scarano, “the blog community did not know this background information and when the structural skeleton was erected, people thought the building was structurally unsound. They thought it was an attempt to prevent the building from collapsing, as opposed to a decorative touch.”In addition, the breezeways that were added now moderate the temperature, adding a “green touch to a building that was already built,” says Scarano. Olive Park, which is now complete and ready for occupancy, offers studio, one-, two- and three-bedroom residences, ranging in size from approximately 460 sq. ft. to 1,220 sq. ft. with kitchens that include white oak veneer and high-gloss cabinets, CaesarStone cabinets, Fisher & Paykel refrigerators and dishwashers, and Bosch ranges.The building’s amenities include a meditation garden, swimming pool and lounge, billiard room, roof cabanas, fitness center, spa and pet spa.“The marriage of the old and the new was successful and made the project stronger in terms of viability for sales,” asserts Scarano, adding that his firm was brought onto the project at the beginning of the recession.

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