Lavanburg Homes, erected in 1927, is a six-story building with 95 apartments owned by the New York City Housing Authority, and operated by the Henry Street Settlement. The storm surge accompanying Superstorm Sandy flooded the cellar and submerged the entire boiler room in salt water for several days, effectively destroying or severely damaging all mechanical and electrical systems in the cellar. Maintenance personnel and emergency contractors made great strides in replacing other damaged mechanical equipment, but the facility remains dependent on a temporary street boiler that provide heat and hot water several years after the event.
Construction is underway for a comprehensive resilience package for the facility. The facility will be connected to a new steam plant at the adjacent Baruch Houses for efficient and reliable heat. We are providing further improvements by elevating critical electrical equipment and entry plazas, renovating entry lobbies, replacing roofs, replacing two security offices and implementing full LED site lighting.
Lavanburg Homes is part of a broader project to create a resilience master plan for the Baruch Houses, the largest New York City Housing Authority (NYCHA) development in Manhattan. Baruch Houses has 18 buildings in addition to Lavanburg Homes, with over 6,000 residents in total. NYCHA challenged us to consider the long-term resilience of this development, as a model for reconceiving how NYCHA organizes and maintains their existing building stock.