Location
61 Street James Place, Brooklyn

Completion
2005

Client
Pratt Institute

Square Footage
26,000 SF

Architect
Steven Holl Architects
Rogers Marvel Architects

Project Executives
Michael Porcelli
Robert Ware

Pratt Institute School of Architecture - Higgins Hall Center Section

Sciame was the Construction Manager responsible for the renovation of The Higgins Hall Center Section for the Pratt Institute’s School of Architecture. It is the first building in New York designed by architect Steven Holl in collaboration with Rogers Marvel Architects. The separate structural components of the building can be read from both inside and out, making it an ideal teaching tool. As a result, the Center Wing is more than just an addition to the architecture school- it is an integral part of the curriculum for teachers and students alike.

By working closely with the design team, Sciame was able to reduce construction costs by 20% without affecting the key architectural features of the building. Once the project moved into construction, the challenge was to build the new Wing between two existing, continuously functioning buildings, join them structurally, mechanically, and aesthetically, and do all this without disturbing classes and in time for the Center Wing to open for the 2005-2006 school year.

This unusual structure is comprised of a pre-cast concrete moment frame on which hollow core concrete planks are set for floor slabs. Because the pre-cast elements were designed to be exposed as finish surfaces, extra care and caution had to be taken during construction. In addition, the open cores of the floor plans were used as electrical chases, requiring a high degree of trade coordination and prep work. The finished product is a clean space in which the MEP backbone is hidden but the underlying structure is clearly expressed.

Project Awards

Architecture Honor Award
Roger H. Corbetta Award
Lucy G. Moses Preservation Award