For constructing the building, Helder used the most sustainable materials for every element, from the foundation to the roof. The building’s most striking feature is the solar panel-clad facade. Normally, solar arrays need to be placed at an angle to be the most effective, but due to Metropolitan Green’s location and small footprint, Helder decided to put the panels on the south-facing facade.
The ground floor of Metropolitan Green acts as a pop-up gallery for rotating designers, and two rental duplexes occupy the top four floors. Helder created a sky-lit basement studio for himself. Resident artists work with Helder and art director Angela Silva in promoting and retailing their projects.
The building has a passive heating and cooling system, and the high mass walls and floors naturally regulate temperature year round. The building has a radiant-floor heating system that works in tandem with the energy-saving ventilation system. Large, south-facing windows allow for ample daylight. A shared rooftop deck helps with regulating the temperature of the building.
The building is located close to the Brooklyn-Queens Expressway, a factor that could deter some from the space, but low-e windows were installed on the highway-facing side of the building to mitigate noise. In regards to air quality, outside air is filtered through MERV 16 filters before circulating in the house, ensuring that the air is some of the cleanest in the city.
All of the flooring and cabinets are made with rapidly renewable materials and no VOC paints were used throughout the building. The appliances and lighting are all Energy Star rated. Helder is still in the midst of LEED paperwork, but the building is on track to receive a Platinum rating.
Metropolitan Green not only offers a talented team of creative professionals for artists to work with, but it also boasts one of the most gorgeous live-work spaces an artist could ask for. From the beautiful daylit gallery and sustainable features to the spacious duplexes and private rear decks, the building is the ideal environment for artistic, eco-conscious types to thrive.