As Brooklyn continues to reach upward, its newest denizens demand an aesthetic which marries the past with the present. For the latest buildings, rooftop spaces are not an after-thought but are carefully engineered and planned early in the design phase, often long before there is a semblance of a space to survey.
The primary challenge with common spaces for residential buildings is to provide some level of individual privacy while developing an overall spatial design which will also foster social interaction between users. In order to achieve this balance, smaller conversational spaces which are defined through the rigid face of the wood-clad planters and accented by hearty plantings and provide a diverse mix of seating types from long benches attached to the face of the planters to moveable chairs and tables allowing for maximum flexibility. The smaller conversational spaces take advantage of the views from the outside edges of the roof while the larger common spaces are defined by plant-softened wood fences.
The materials of the space borrow from the buildings context, reclaiming many of the materials which permeated Brooklyn’s industrial heritage. Concrete, steel, aluminum and various fabrics are some of the elements which help to unite the past with the present. Transferring the feel of the sidewalk planting bed to the rooftop is achieved through the raw steel-edged green-roof garden areas which help define the spaces.
The Trump Tower New York, located at 725 5th Avenue, is a 58-story mixed-use skyscraper in the heart of midtown Manhattan. As part of its public space atrium, Blondie’s renovated the exterior gardens on the 4th floor brick terrace to include additional Japanese Maples and entirely new planting beds. Located primarily in shadow, a plant palette was assembled that best suites the site conditions to provide color and texture. A layering of Japanese Maples, Ilex and Hydrangea provide the back drop for perennials of heuchera, astilbe and variegated hostas. Annual seasonal color was added to the summertime palette to provide additional color. While renovating the garden beds, particular care was given to reconstructing a healthy soil body. The key restoration features that will enable these planting beds to thrive are, amended soil with topdressing, a monitored irrigation system, appropriate plant material and an on-going, routine maintenance program. When taking on a landscape renovation, these factors are the major considerations that will determine the success of your garden project.
As professional horticulturalists, Blondie’s Treehouse Inc. has worked closely with healthcare professionals to establish industry standards that maximize the benefits of having green plants within the healthcare system while minimizing the potential risks of soil borne pathogens.