- Project Name
- St. Augustine Terrace
- Magnusson Architecture & Planning PC
- New York Institute for Human Development
- Project Types
- Project Scope
- New Construction
- 117,290 sq. feet
- Year Completed
- Shared by
- Miabelle Salzano
- Certifications & Designations
- LEED Gold
- Project Status
FROM THE ARCHITECTS:
Magnusson Architecture + Planning (MAP) will debut St. Augustine Terrace, a new mid-rise building that will provide 112 units of affordable housing for low-income families in the Bronx. The project was commissioned by The Catholic Charities of the Archdiocese of New York and built on the site of the former St. Augustine’s Church in the heart of the Morrisania neighborhood.
The design was inspired by the notion that a house of worship is a beacon of light in its community. From that idea came 13 floors of large, fully glazed elevator lobbies which provide spectacular views by day and then become a glowing tower by night.
“The beacon of light idea is a visual representation of the client’s mission, it’s about hope and community,” said architect Fernando Villa, AIA, a principal at Magnusson Architecture and Planning (MAP). And it also let us create a beautiful amenity with fantastic views that everyone can enjoy. The design is inclusive that way. This project shows what affordable housing can be, both for the community of people who live there and those in the surrounding neighborhood.”
The placement of this south facing element was the most inclusive way to share the city vista with all residents. At the same time it gives light to the adjacent park in the evening.
One third of the units (35 studio apartments) will be set aside for adults with mental illness who will be serviced by the Beacon of Hope Division of Catholic Charities Community Services which provides mental health support services. The remaining 77 units will include 19 one-bedroom, 37 two-bedroom, and 21 three-bedroom apartments.
Rock formations uncovered during construction were incorporated into the landscape at the front of the property providing a visual association with the park and a connection to the area’s natural environment. They also supply an organic complement to the straight lines and right angels of the building. Just beyond the entry, decking extends out over the rocks to a look-out point, a spot for residents and visitors to enjoy as the topography slopes downward toward the west revealing more views. The bell and stones from the original church which are placed throughout the landscaping, celebrate the site’s history and create yet another link to the neighborhood.
Amenities for Residents
With offices for social services on-site, this project is a prime example of the alternative ways that religious institutions can serve their communities. A large portion of the ground floor fronting Fulton Avenue will include supportive housing offices, the community/multi-use room and laundry. The ground floor will receive direct daylight and have access to a landscaped front yard. Below grade space will include bike storage and mechanical rooms.
The building, which is also expected to achieve LEED Gold status, will be enrolled in the NYSERDA Multifamily Performance Program (MPP). As a NYC HPD funded project, it will comply with the Enterprise Green Communities certification program. The PV system at St. Augustine Terrace is projected to offset 55,555 kWh in the first year of operation, equivalent to driving across the country almost 36 times.
The resiliency and sustainability measures, quality building materials, broadly accessible panoramas, evening light provided to the nearby park and street corners, and elements that tie to the history of the place, all exemplify the inclusivity and care that underlie this work.