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Sorting House

AO worked with a visionary developer to create new residences over the United States Radio City Post Office on Manhattan’s west side. The Sorting House consists of a three-story addition with 30 apartments each providing maximum living flexibility and private outdoor space. Our innovative plans respond to a unique set of building conditions and zoning regulations to produce distinct unit types such as duplex “townhouses” with large south facing terraces and “lofts” with movable walls and foyers big enough to use as home offices or bedrooms. For the residences to be built while the post office remained operational, the new steel frame bears on existing columns avoiding intrusive and costly foundations work and, with the post office downsized to the second floor and below, an interstitial pipe chase was introduced within the third-floor shell to minimized construction disruption and provide an acoustic buffer between the old and new uses.

From the street the post office reads as part of a larger unified building. Using a new high-performance curtain wall assembly, we detailed the brick facing as a modern interpretation of post office’s 1920s façade and incorporated custom shaped and perforated metal panels (the size of a paper envelope) to distinguish the residential entry. Interior materials transition gradually from a darker, grittier palette at the street level public areas to lighter, more refined finishes in the private domains above. Solid wood and blackened steel millwork along with a leather banquet and artwork, consisting of framed historic stamps and postcards, create a welcoming entry lobby, different from, though acknowledging, the adjacent post office.

Client

Cadence Development Corporation

Scope

35,000 square foot New Construction + 10,000 square foot Renovation

Location

New York, NY

Staus

Completed 2018

Services

Architecture, Interior Design, Zoning Approvals, Condominium Offering Plans, Fixtures/Furnishings/Equipment