When we met at the Barbican we spoke about the portfolio as a series of counterpoints: East Harlem against Central Park South; Taft Houses against The Witkoff site at 36 CPS; affluence and social capital against deprivation and unemployment.
To stand against the dismembered taxonomy of Taft Houses which I have been looking at 432 Park Avenue as an example of the opulence of Billionaire’s Row and to understand the way in which these towers are planned.
In the production of these drawings it has been interesting to note a few of the disparities between the two architectures: mix of accommodation; provision of additional rooms within the apartments such as libraries; ratios of bathrooms to bedrooms and the zoning of the luxury apartment by gender; the cross-programming of circulations spaces to become dressing areas and the role of the public realm – the condos being sold on the basis of having private elevator landings.
Volumetrically, the largest apartment in 432 Park Ave. is more than 10 times the area of the smallest apartment in Taft House and has ceiling heights of 4.85m, more than twice that of Taft (2.25m)! I wonder if these spatial characteristics might inform the hybridisation of the tower.
Could public spaces be carved into the apartments to exploit these private ‘corner views’, only partially delineated from the privacy of the condo.
For the immediate future I intend to draw up a few pages looking at the Bungalow Germania and Eisenman references and then see how far I can move with the design proposals before we meet again…