550 Vanderbilt is a 278-unit residential building located in Prospect Heights, Brooklyn. The design and construction are driven by two prominent features of the surrounding neighborhood: the architectural character of the streetscape, and eight acres of new, publicly accessible greenspace that defines the site. The resulting relationship between landscape and architecture make 550 Vanderbilt a fitting transition between the streetscape and the new park, designed to pull in nature at all scales for the health and well-being of its residents. It is a project that mediates between the smaller scale of the brownstone and the creation of a sustainable, higher density urbanism. The approach to 550 reveals a refined composition of massing, custom-fired brick inspired by nearby historic structures, and windows that evoke the detailing and proportions of neighboring residences. Window shrouds add depth to the facades, while custom planter boxes and biomimetic-patterned screens help residents connect to nature. The street wall rises 60’ and then begins a series of gradual terraces and setbacks, acknowledging the existing urban fabric of the historic Prospect Heights community, while marking the edge of Pacific Park and the vibrant streetscape of Vanderbilt Avenue.
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