CTA Architects Completes Massive Exterior Renovation at Morningside Gardens Co-Op Complex

Words: Bronzella Cleveland

CTA Architects P.C. has completed the $10-million exterior renovation of the multi-building, 980-apartment Morningside Gardens co-op complex in West Harlem’s Morningside Heights section of Manhattan

The project team completes repairs to 560,000 square feet of façades and 80,500 square feet of roofs.

CTA Architects P.C. has completed the $10-million exterior renovation of the multi-building, 980-apartment Morningside Gardens co-op complex in West Harlem’s Morningside Heights section of Manhattan. Morningside Heights Housing Corporation (MHHC), which manages the campus of six, 21-story residential towers and support facilities, was the client. Brend Renovation served as general contractor.

Open to residents in 1957, Morningside Gardens is located in an area that also is home to several prominent institutions of higher education, including Columbia University, Barnard College, Teachers College, Manhattan School of Music, the Jewish Theological Seminary, and the Union Theological Seminary. Many of the co-op’s residents are employees of these schools. The complex encompasses more than nine acres and is bordered by Broadway to the west, Amsterdam Avenue to the east, LaSalle Street to the north, and West 123rd Street to the south.

“The project began as a renovation plan to address the maintenance and repairs recommendations from a previous Façade Inspection & Safety Program report, required by the New York City Department of Buildings,” explained CTA Principal G. Douglas Cutsogeorge, AIA. “While preparing for the renovations, CTA performed a new survey that discovered additional required repairs. Our team’s report also outlined long-term facility maintenance and upgrade needs. CTA, in collaboration with MHHC, then developed the final list of the necessary work that optimized the budget, while addressing the short- and long-term safety and physical plant operational needs,” he added.

The CTA team, which also included Senior Project Manager Frank Scanlon, AIA, and Designer and Construction Administrator Ana Ribeiro, designed the repairs program and served as the construction administrator for the project. Goldstein Associates Consulting Engineers, DPC (GACE) was the structural engineer.

The project repaired 560,000 square feet of façades and 80,500 square feet of roofs. The renovations included repairs to and repointing of the brick façades that addressed spalling and other weather damage; replacement and repairs of deteriorated and delaminated metal-clad blue stone window sills; renovations to selective flashings, lintels, and concrete balconies and rails; gutter and scupper drain repairs; waterproofing of roofs; replacement of all roof rails; and repairs to rooftop elevator bulkheads. As part of repairs to the roofs, the crews installed Siplast adhesive bitumen membrane waterproofing system on all six buildings.

Brend construction crews used Glen Gery 4HB and 47HB jumbo size brick with Glen Gery G-302 mortar color to replace damaged brick and complete repointing. The roof drains are cast iron, model 1010C; and scupper drains are cast iron, model 1510T; both by Jay R. Smith Mfg. Co. Brend Renovation fabricated copper bulkhead gutters and downspouts.

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