adAPT NYC: The Micro Unit Design Competition Winner

adAPT NYC: The Micro Unit Design Competition Winner

Janel Laban
Jan 22, 2013

Last year, I had the huge honor of being a member of an Advisory Board to the Mayor for Bloomberg's adAPT micro unit project. Back in November, I met with my fellow board members and reviewed the finalists in the competition to help determine the design the city would move forward with. (Talk about a day to remember - it was all a bit of a dream come true for this design-obsessed editor.) Today, the Mayor announced the winning submission and the choice is a very interesting one. Super small and modular in construction, the 55 units will range from 250 to 370 square feet. Jump below for a look at one of the floor plans and a rendering of the interior...

The Floorplan

Some details of the winning design, chosen from a field of 33:

• 55 micro-units that measure 250 to 370 square feet. 40 percent of the apartments will be set aside as affordable housing units, based on competitive market rates, and will be available to households with incomes that meet specific criteria based on Area Median Income.

• Modular construction, with the modules prefabricated locally by Capsys at the Brooklyn Navy Yard

• 9'-10" floor-to-ceiling heights in apartments with Juliette balconies to amplify the sense of openness. The kitchen, bath and storage (closets and loft) are part of a "toolbox" area, and the main area or "canvas" is a flexible, open space for living and sleeping. A counter/table that separates the kitchen from the living area can be folded up when not in use to further open up the space.

• Efficient apartment design with ample storage, like a 16'-long overhead loft space and a full-depth closet.

• Programmed interior space, like a resident lounge and reading areas, that comprises 18% of the building's gross square footage and is available to all building residents. Common spaces will include a rooftop garden, shared lounge areas, including one that can seat 20 for dinner and an 8th floor deck. Laundry, storage, bike and fitness rooms are also planned.

• A multi-purpose and transparently-glazed space on the ground floor that could be programed for rehearsals, performances, lectures and other creative activities, in addition to a cafĂ©.


The resulting building will be located on West 27th street and is slated to be the first multi-unit modular construction structure in Manhattan. The team behind the winning proposal includes Monadnock Development, nARCHITECTS and the Actors Fund HDC.

Interested in learning more? An exhibit on the project opens tomorrow at the Museum of the City of New York.

adAPT Press Release 1.22.13
New York Times
Museum of the City of New York

Micro Unit Design Solutions and a Little Bit of Apartment Therapy
SF's Micro-Apartments: 220 Square Feet for $1500

(Images: New York City Mayors Office via the New York Times)

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