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GREEN SCENE: Panelized Wall Systems

New York
GREEN SCENE: Panelized Wall Systems
Meltzer/Mandl's David Carpenter
Architectural firm Meltzer/Mandl has been using panelized wall systems in its affordable housing designs for more than 12 years—its latest project is the 279-unit Roscoe C. Brown Jr. Apartments, under construction at 3952 Third Ave in the Bronx. VP David Carpenter tells us that it has taken a while for panelized walls and their more efficient structural systems to come into common use, and the firm has been working to educate clients and contractors. Their most distinguishing feature is the ability to create lighter,tighter building envelopes with thinner walls—and because of this, structures are erected and closed more quickly, saving on construction and energy costs. They can also be better insulators and more resistant to sound transmission and heat gains.
Clermont-Greene at 174 Vanderbilt Ave. in Brooklyn
And thinner walls translate into more units and higher rates of return than commonly used wall systems, David says. They also allow available land to be used more efficiently—in the Roscoe C. Brown Jr. Apartments, at least 10 additional units were built in the same amount of space. This is critical, since most sites targeted for affordable housing feature challenging conditions like awkward shapes, slopes, or other limitations due to adjacent structures or features. Meltzer/Mandl has also used panelized wall systems at the 78-unit Westrock Development at 920 Westchester Ave, Bronx, which will break ground this year, and the recently completed 74-unit Clermont-Greene at 174 Vanderbilt Ave,Brooklyn (pictured).
Related Topics: Brown Jr