Two main interventions allowed 51N4E to transform the dinky old building into a contemporary marvel that now takes up a big chunk of a large city block. First they cut out a giant pentagonal “void” from the nucleus of the building, in order to flood the whole building with daylight – an energy-saving strategy that is also deeply aesthetically pleasing.
The center of the building houses laboratory and studio space, music venues and a rooftop terrace, all of which are connected by a central staircase, while a new open pavilion at the street level leads visitors into the lower entrance – like a giant antechamber. Lastly, the entire building is clad in beautiful yellow brick that was harvested from the building’s original interior.
Photos © Filip Dujardin and Paul Steinbrück