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ennead architects + vito acconci + george trakas: newtown creek
original content
jun 13, 2013
ennead architects + vito acconci + george trakas: newtown creek


ennead architects, vito acconci, george trakas: ’newtown creek wastewater treatment plant’

all images courtesy of ennead architects

 

 

 

in cooperation with the new york department of environmental protection (DEP), ennead architects  has designed a total renovation of the newtown creek wastewater treatment plant, seeking to update the architecture to reflect environmental mindfulness as well as capture the enterprising essence of new york city. while the massive project is divided into nine phases over 25 years, the plant has been operational throughout the process. remarkably, the large-scale architectural changes have been complemented by the implementation of space-changing projects from the likes of vito acconci and george takas. the physical changes to the plant have manifested in the addition of three major buildings; a welcome center, new centrifuge structure and a disinfection facility- all connected by glass walkways. while the water-bottle shaped digesters of the centrifuge have created a distinct mark on the skyline with bot form and rich lighting, the architecture has fundamentally changed the relationship of the civic project to the community. the renovation has used the confluence of art and architecture to incorporate the civic building into an informative hub and educational center. vito acconci’s sculptural waterscape in the visitor center creates an accessible, desirable space, whereas george takas waterfront walkway successfully reclaims areas of ambulation for the community. the projects were executed as part of new york city’s percent for art program, dedicated to democratizing public art by way of seamlessly weaving site-specific work into civic buildings. the masterplan addresses the the community’s concern with an expanding facility by employing color, aerial walkways, bridges and considered forms. the newtown creek area is buffered by green space and develops the complex as more than a strictly industrial area– the result is a new typology for large-scale urban work.

 

 

(left): ‘newtown creek wastewater treatment plant’ before

(right): after ennead renovation

 

 

disinfection building

 

 

support facility and welcome center

 

 

 bold colors and simple geometries define the aesthetic of ennead’s renovation

 

 

 the digesters are formed to resemble water bottles

 

 

the glass walkway extends the street grid

 

 

views  from the walkway connect the facility to manhattan

 

 

 

 

 

sculpture illustrating the water cycle, by vito acconci

 

 

support facility

 

 

ennead collaborated with george trakas to incorporate a waterfront park and promenade at the site

 

 

lighting design by l’observatoire international

 

 

 

full article here

 

project info:

project name: newtown creek wastewater treatment plant
client: city of new york department of environmental protection
government agencies: art commission of the city of new york, new york city department of cultural affairs
architect: ennead architects llp
design partner: richard olcott FAIA
design counsel: james polshek FAIA
management partner: timothy hartung FAIA
project team: joanne sliker aia, greg clawson AIA, jack phillips, peter mullan
architects/engineers of record: greeley and hansen, hazen and sawyer, malcolm pirnie
consultants:
lighting design: l’observatoire international
landscape: quennell rothschild & partners
construction: silverite construction co., aj pegno & tully construction, john p. picone inc/mccullagh construction, skanska, picone, mccullagh, perini construction
percent for art artists: vito acconci,  george trakas

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