Competition Entry to the R3Build Competition hosted by the Urban Green Council of New York CIty. Following Superstorm Sandy, New York began a much needed process of evaluating how resilient their infrastructure is, and what needs to be done should other storms of that magnitude occur. This conversation is not limited to just to the infrastructure of transportation, sewage, and energy distribution; but also to how the way the residents of New York can live along the various waterfronts they have come to call home. For the Bklyn_Basin Entry, the first floor is at an elevation of +15’-0”, this added height allows for the landscaping at the ground level to be used as a means of water management. The design has the ability to include means of saving money on heating and water usage. The sloped green roof can have a solar panel attached to utilize a solar water heater as a backup for any issues that may arise with the boiler or should the electricity go out. In addition there is space available in the Mechanical room to place a grey water storage/filtration system, to irrigate the landscape should there be long periods of time with no rainfall.
The mechanical / storage space of the house, what would typically be a basement in other homes is at a +7’-0” elevation. The decision to leave the mechanical at a lower level instead of placing it on the top of the building was based on the zoning height restriction and also to ensure that the residents retained the better views of the waterfront. To assist with energy costs, multiple strategies have been put in place, to encourage passive heating and cooling. Placing a green roof on the residence serves as a thermal barrier keeping heat in during the winter and cooling the house during the summer through means of evaporating water absorbed by the vegetation. By sloping the roof to one side, and implementing sun tubes, the building is able to take in a maximum amount of natural day-light to reduce the need for artificial light. Open spaces in the second floor allow for light from the roof to reach down to the first floor.
Breezy Point, specifically the proposed site, lies along the water front of Jamaica Bay. The native eco-system of Jamaica Bay is marshland. Marshland is ideal for a waterfront community due to the fact that the ecosystem thrives on flood water, creating different zones where the water can be both collected and absorbed. For the proposed design, the site has been landscaped to create a miniature marshland eco-system. The North entrance of the site slopes down to the beach front. The middle of the site has a low point where, should there be another high tide or a large amount of rain fall, the water has a place to collect. Plantings ideal to these conditions are blueberry and cranberry bushes, ostrich fern, Yellow Iris’, and Water canna. Increasing the amount of water that can be held on site takes away from the amount of water that needs to be put through the city’s storm water/sewage system, in turn reduces risk of flooding due to back flow