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The diversified program proposes several spatial conditions, span distances, use and environmental criteria in order to elicit a diverse group of architectural compositions and technological solutions that incorporate the use of differing structural, framing, and detail-oriented components. Such conditions may be:

  • Vertical mid-rise framing (i.e. Mass Timber Systems such as CLT and FFTT)
  • Interior partitioning (stud framing or modular panelized systems)
  • Exterior cladding (modular assemblies)
  • Long-span structure (glu-lam beams, truss joists, or other composite members)

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Residences in this project are a mix of small units for single or double occupancy and larger, family-based units with more than one bedroom. All apartments must have exposure to natural light and air, as well as rooms that meet minimum size requirements of the New York City Department of Housing Preservation and Development (HPD) <>

The Warhol Museum 
The Andy Warhol Museum in Pittsburg, Warhol’s birthplace, is a vital forum in which diverse audiences of artists, scholars, and the general public are galvanized through creative interaction with the art and life of Andy Warhol.

By its inclusion in this project, the Warhol would contribute to New York City, a constantly rotating selection the fruits of one of the city’s most celebrated creative progeny.  Its collection includes works in all of Warhol’s various media: Painting, Sculpture, Print, Drawing, Photography and Film, as well as archival source material. As an auditorium / film screening venue, the Warhol can contribute a new multi-use cultural location to the local community.

Essex Street Market
Essex Street Market has been an evolving fixture in Manhattan’s Lower East Side for over 70 years, founded in 1940 as part an effort to find a new place for street merchants to do business. Local residents get personalized service from local vendors as they gather to browse an ethnically diverse collection of goods including flowers, meats, cheeses, clothing, prepared foods and fresh produce.

Beyond its intended function as a shopping destination, the Market developed into a social environment where residents come to connect and share ideas. Part of the accord reached between the city, developers, and the community was that an expanded Essex Market would provide a home for the existing vendors as well as encourage new business and means of exchange in any new development at Essex Crossing.


Program Distribution 

The Warhol Museum


Sq. Ft.

Lobby / Tickets / Coat Check       


Auditorium / Film Screening

200 seats


Open Gallery


Project Space


Administration / Curatorial







4% Museum GSF



10% Museum GSF


Museum Total

50,000-60,000 Acceptable            


Essex Street Market

Permanent Stalls


Flexible Stalls


Eating Area






Market Total

30,000-40,000 Acceptable




Apartment Types

Individual Sq. Ft.

Sq. Ft.

Micro Units

325 (quantity: 150)



1 Bedroom

650 (quantity 80)



2 Bedroom

850 (quantity 60)



3 Bedroom

1,000 (quantity 20)





Recreation (Indoor)


Lobby / Mail




Bike Parking


Bike Maintenance / Storage





4% Residential GSF



10% Residential GST


Residential Total 110,000-120,000 Acceptable 203,718




 Gross Sq. Ft:                                270,000-310,000 Acceptable          296,504   


In spite of the pressures of gentrification, the LES remains  a diverse  community.  According  to Census data,  Community  District  3 is 32% white, 34% Asian, 25% Latino, but just 7% black.

While the Seward Park urban renewal site was halted for years as neighborhood groups debated over the need for new affordable housing, racial politics was always a factor. When the community finally came together on a compromise plan, housing for both those displaced and for other local residents was a priority, and former site tenants, as well as other community residents won preference.

The site is identified in New York City records as Block 352 and part of Block 346, bounded to the north by Delancey Street, with Essex Street to the west, Broome to the south and Suffolk to the east. Sanborn Maps Plates 16 and 17 for Manhattan  cover the area. The site is currently separated by Norfolk Street, but the two blocks may be combined, and part of adjacent road spur off Delancey can be included as indicated  on the Site Plan and Site Axonometric.  Below grade,  for the purposes  of this competition,  the J,M,Z subway  lines, as well as the abandoned trolley tracks proposed to be developed into the Lowline park are at 20’ below sidewalk level. Although competition entries may follow the general planning guidelines being enacted in the current development proposals for Essex Crossing, completely different planning guidelines may be proposed as the lead project.

Delancey Street is a major auto, subway, pedestrian and bicycle corridor leading to the Williamsburg Bridge, a structure that innovatively pushed the limits of the construction technologies of its day.

Among the many media projects that have feature the area are the films “The Naked City”, “Crossing Delancey”, and the ethnographic documentary  “The Lower East Side: An Endangered  Place 2009”. Refer to the resources for more site information.


In general, please refer to the New York City code. Please note, however, that in reference to timber construction, one of the goals of this competition is to explore new construction opportunities enabled by contemporary timber technology that may not yet be anticipated or fully embraced by the current NYC code. Each entry is encouraged to understand the potential of contemporary timber systems, drawing from available resources and comparable code reviews from other jurisdictions and governmental agencies, as they pertain to new timber and wood systems, to inform the submitted design.

Also, please refer to the International Building Code. Accessibility guidelines need to be followed; refer to the Americans with Disabilities Act, along with the principals of Universal Design.

Do not follow the NYC Zoning Resolution for building setbacks, heights or massing, as the minimum and maximum building heights and massing square footage prescribed in this competition brief is very different than what the NYC Zoning Resolution calls for on this site. Buildings proposed for the site shall include a mid-rise  portion of a height no less than 70’ and no greater  than 80’, and programmed  bulk shall not be less than 190,00 SF nor greater  than 220,000 SF as outlined  in the Program  Distribution.


The design project must be conceived in structural timber. A strategy should be considered that evaluates a method for taking advantage of timber’s properties and characteristics in order to conceptualize and propose a critical evaluation of the design solution