250SOUTH – A Recycled Urban Mixed-Use Building Located on the south edge of Rochester, New York’s Center City, in the Washington Square District, a one-hundred-year-old, three-story brick storage building stood in a grouping of other underutilized warehouses. The last existing component in the City’s former public natatorium complex, it was relegated to serving as a base for a large billboard, and it had become a forgotten building in the central business district. This re-emerging district needed a catalyst project to jump start adjacent development and to breathe life into this portion of the Center City. Its proximity, within short walking distance, to civic and cultural institutions, sports venues, and office towers made this location ripe for redevelopment. Contributing to the Rochester Center City Master Plan to bring additional housing into Downtown, the building was converted into mixed-use with commercial space on the first and second floors, loft apartments on the third floor, and a new fourth floor penthouse apartment addition. Consequently, the ‘embodied energy’ of this structure has been recycled and repurposed. Initially designed as a warehouse, the capacity of the existing structure allowed for the fourth floor addition. This standing-seam, metal-clad wedge opens up to the western views of the Genesee River and the new Frederick Douglass – Susan B. Anthony Bridge. It also serves as a crowning element consistent with Rochester’s Downtown landmark buildings. The new concrete masonry stair tower addition was strategically located on the northeast corner to maintain open floor plates and preserve important views. The patina of the existing brick warehouse remains, telling the story of its first century, while the careful juxtaposition of its new additions and appendages reinforces the balanced contrast between old and new. The use of honest materials – concrete, masonry, galvanized steel, aluminum, and glass, is consistent with the palate of the city skyline.


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