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The building that houses this loft was never constructed with a future residential scenario in mind. It was built in 1917, and originally housed an enormous battery and generators, intended as a backup in the event of power failure in Boston.
Dimensionally, it’s a very deep building. Thus, there is a lack of light and air at its core. Since there are high ceilings, the space gave us the opportunity to bring light deep into the space, using every opening to carve into the core. In order to do this, we worked systematically with the program, studying all the support spaces — closets, storage, bathrooms and circulation zones — to configure them in such a way that they gain their position as close to the center of the building as possible, in turn leaving the best light and air for the served spaces, the living and dining room, as well as the bedrooms.
We also had to factor that the support spaces — such as the bathrooms and kitchen — came with massive amounts of infrastructure; thus we capitalized on the spaces of the core to weave those elements deep within the residual spaces of both the plan and section of the space. In this way, the edges of the living areas were never compromised by the infrastructure that serves them. The organization of the apartment, then, is formed like a dumbbell, with bedrooms to the south and the living room to the north. The entry hall forms the link between these two extremes and offers a new spine that brings coherence to the apartment.
Architect: Office dA
Principal in Charge: Nader Tehrani
Project Architect: Dan Gallagher
Project Coordinators: Sean Baccei, Harry Lowd
Design Team: Monica Ponce de Leon (Principal), Lisa Huang, Arthur Chang, Penn Ruderman, Ahmad Reza Schricker, Julian Palacio, Ellie Abrons
Simpspn Gupertz & Heger (Structural)
Ripman Lighting (Lighting)
Wozny Barbar & Assoc. (MEP)
CW Keller (Millwork)
Photographer: John Horner