Architecture: Scalar Architecture – Julio Salcedo – Principal in Charge, Yetunde Ogunwumi, Megan Roy, Justin Tan, Adam Kuruc, Josh Carrelo-Mendez
Location: West Hills, New York, US
Year of Completion: 2015
Area: 5,500 sq ft
Structural: Thomas D. Reilly P.E.
Materials: Standing seam enamel metal roof, recycled fiber cement panels, Steel and wood insulated windows, certified harvested wood floors, 2 by 6 balloon frame construction.
The pre-school is based on the Reggio pedagogical approach which fosters community through
exploration and discovery in a supportive and enriching environment based on the interests of the children through a self-guided curriculum. The environment as a whole becomes a “third teacher”.
To enhance pedagogical focus on active and exploratory space, we designed a series of focus
relations to the outdoors and more importantly, spatial variety as implemented by the fenestration and roof lines. As an example, the alternating height window envelope defines child and adult spaces as well as it integrates the sectional shift of the program and topography.
A series of pedagogical legible passive energy and water harvesting methods as well as a geothermal system provide a sustainable structure. Moreover, the roofline – besides its enunciated role in the harvesting of solar energy and water – integrates a previous attached 1950 pitch roof structure.
The project is sited on a residential neighborhood with stringent regulations. The design co-opts the standard materials and methods and transforms their assemblage. This transformation is attained by engendering a series of geometric operations at different scales that provide a reiterative sequencing of folds and patterns. The result allows to profoundly heighten the registers of entry, environment, program and perception from within these restrictions.
scalar Architecture is an award winning international design firm based in New York City. As the term indicates, scalar Architecture operates at a variety of scales collaborating with allied key experts. The fruits of these collaborations are all embracing projects that garner accolades for their transformative solutions, such as the International First Prize for the development of Hamar, Norway, and the Lasso House, which won the Architectural League Young Architect’s Award. In all its ventures, scalar Architecture provides an expansive deployment of architecture and its registers of program, geometry, context, aesthetics and form.
scalar’s residential experience includes dwellings and housing in Spain, Maine, and New York as well as large scale sustainable developments in Guatemala and Costa Rica. With expertise in hospitality and commercial projects, scalar’s work also includes hotels in Nicaragua and Hounduras, and US restaurants Recess and Flurt. Institutional projects include commissioned designs for the Woodstock Association Museum, the offices of the Dean at Cornell School’s of Architecture and an ongoing 100,000 sf medical building in New York.
scalar Architecture collaborates with multiple international partners, including Regional, a joint venture developing hotels in Central America. Urban and landscape collaborations include the re-development of Hamar, and chosen entries for Build a Better Burb and Elemental Chile, as well as a large cross-programmed sustainable park in Madrid, Spain.
scalar Architecture’s Principal is Julio Salcedo, Licensed Arch. US / EU, LEEP AP. Born in Madrid, Salcedo holds a B.A. in architecture and sculpture from Rice University, and a Master of Architecture from Harvard University. He has taught at Harvard University, the University of Pennsylvania, Syracuse University, Cornell University, and currently at City College as an Associate Professor. In addition to the book Generic Specific Continuum, Salcedo has written numerous articles about the work of scalar Architecture.
Prior to launching his own office, Julio Salcedo worked for Pritzker prize winner Rafael Moneo. He also worked at SOM in New York as Senior Designer for the Time Warner Center at Columbus Circle, and for Rick Cook of COOKFOX. He has been a juror for international and national competitions, including AIA awards and the Kay e Sante nan Ayiti Housing Competition in Haiti.
The work of scalar Architecture has been exhibited at the Farnsworth Museum, and has been widely published in both the US (Architectural Record, The Architect’s Newspaper, Interior Design, Princeton Architectural Press, Breathe, House Beautiful) and abroad in Canada, Germany, Norway, Belgium, Holland, Spain, Thailand, Japan, and China.