New York City Charter School Center 2009 Vendor Fair

New York City Charter School Center 2009 Vendor Fair
Janko Rasic Architects, PLLC will be attending the
New York City Charter School Center
Vendor Fair 2009 for Facilities: Architecture.

DREAM Charter School
232 East 103rd Street, Room 509 N
New York, NY 10029

May 7, 2009



Top Photograph: Cushman & Wakefield’s Ken McCarthy (panel moderator) with Janko Rasic, AIA

"There were some harrowing points, but we should begin to see some recovery next year. Ken, with Janko Rasic Architects’ Janko Rasic, tells us that 80k jobs have already been lost, and Mayor Mike predicts we’ll lose a total of295k—150k of those office users. Look for a turnaround in the first halfof ’10."


Please click here for link to full article.

A new publication of the American Library Association features the Port Jefferson Free Library's Teen Center planned by Janko Rasic Architects, PLLC

A new publication of the American Library Association features the Port Jefferson Free Library's Teen Center planned by Janko Rasic Architects, PLLC
"Public and school libraries across the country have positively demonstrated the variety of teen look and feel. . . The Port Jefferson (New York) Free Library's Young Adult Center at Goodtimes resides across the street from the main library in a retail rental space. The teen area is a 620-square-foot room in the rear of the building. (The Friends of the Library occupy part of the front room with the teen services librarians-what a great example of adult-youth collaboration!) This eclectic space was designed collaboratively with teens, staff and an architect [Janko Rasic Architects, PLLC]. It includes maple wood, painted fluorescent lights as well as track lighting, two couches, three lounge chairs, four tables with chairs, and built-in shelving units with large amount of display space." pp.77-78.

Bolan, Kimberly: Teen Spaces The Step-by Step Library Makeover, Second Edition, American Library Association, Chicago, 2009.

Praise for the first edition:
"If you've ever stared at the teen area in your public library and said with a sigh, 'We've got to do something with that space,' this book is your salvation…It's a gem.”--Public Libraries

When writing the first edition ofTeen Spacesin 2002, YA expert Bolan was challenged to find excellent examples. Now, teen spaces abound and interest continues to grow. With a strategic use of web-based technologies—from the author's website to a Flickr account—this new edition showcases success stories as it reaches out to attract a global community of teen librarians committed to meeting the needs of young adults. Revising the first practical guide to creating inviting spaces for teens in the library, Bolan reveals what it takes for your makeover to go as smoothly as possible. You'll find

Step-by-step instructions and easy-to-use latest information on teen spaces policies

New ways to involve teens in the space-renovation process

Updated tools, worksheets, instructions, and vendor information

Inspiring illustrations and discussions of what other libraries have achieved

Best practices for developing teen spaces

Library directors, teen librarians, and school library media specialists will welcome the inspiration from hundreds of teen spaces around the world, along with hands-on suggestions for revamping their own library.

-American Library Association

"Saving History:The benefits of restoring commercial structures"

"Saving History:The benefits of restoring commercial structures"
By Jean Feingold

Published in ASID New York Metro's View Magazine, Spring 2009

New York is known for its buildings and because of the city's age,
many are historic. "New York City has the greatest collection of
architecture of any city in the country," noted Peg Breen,
Executive Director of the non-profit New York Landmarks
Conservancy. "The most identifiable thing about New York is its
skyline, that's what people think of." Commercial and
institutional buildings are an important part of that.

What is a landmark?

The New York City Landmarks Commission is the government agency
that decides whether local buildings are landmarks. When buildings
are proposed for landmark designation by groups like the
Conservancy, the commission evaluates architectural quality and
whether the building represents its style well, as well as the
structure's cultural and historic importance. "Here buildings only
need to be 30 years old to be considered for landmark status," said
Breen. Interest in listing commercial buildings started with the
Seagram Building and the Lever House on Park Avenue. In the last 10
to 15 years, there's been a big push to look at buildings from the
'30s to the '60s and many have such commercial buildings been
designated, she said.

Interior designations less common than exterior

For a commercial interior to have an historic designation, it must
be open to the public regularly. Since the post-9/11 increase in
security, few commercial lobbies allow public access. Windows must appear as originally designed for exterior historic
landmark designations. Since the exterior must retain its original
look, through wall air conditioning, vents and rooftop additions
added after original construction must be removed.

Because historic commercial and industrial buildings are so well
constructed, they can be adaptively reused for many purposes. For
example, in Soho and Tribeca, historic buildings have been
converted to art galleries, shops and restaurant. "They're popular
because they're fabulous buildings and because you have a sense of
place," Breen pointed out. "It's a wonderful combination of modern
stores and modern art but you're also walking through history
because you're walking through a neighborhood built in a contained
period of time."

The Northcourt Building

Located in White Plains, the Northcourt Building is a 12-story Art
Deco office building built around 1929. Its current tenants include
many law firms. Considered a building of historical significance by
the White Plains Historical Society, Janko Rasic Architects, PLLC
of New York was engaged to renovate the lobby which had been
damaged by a fire in the 1950s.

Unknown to the current owners, a pre-existing mezzanine had been
sealed and an acoustical tile hung ceiling with fluorescent light
fixtures installed to hide the fire damage, cutting the once
dramatic open space of the lobby in half. "JRA started by
investigating above the ceiling and uncovered the forgotten double
height space and sealed mezzanine balcony," explained Timothy
Rasic, AIA. "Many of the original decorative elements had been
removed, damaged or covered." They decided to remove the lower
ceiling and restore the space to its original configuration.

"JRA wanted to re-open the sealed mezzanine balcony overlooking the
lobby, recreating the continuous ceiling which extends over both
spaces," Rasic said. "At first the White Plains Building Department
objected because of new building code requirements enacted after
the building was originally built. JRA reviewed building code and
safety conditions with the department and, by installing two sets
of new fire doors at the stairwell and corridor entrance at the
mezzanine level, permission was obtained to re-open the balcony."

The fire had blackened the original multicolor decorative plaster
tile ceiling. Since many of the tiles were missing, damaged or
loose, prior to repainting molds were made from the original
remaining tiles to create replacement pieces. A painter who became
known as "Michelangelo" worked on a scaffold for three months
repainting the tiles on the 18-foot-high ceiling in their original
bronze, gold, terracotta, ochre, siena and brown.

"Lighting the 18-foot-high ceiling proved a challenge," noted
Rasic. "JRA designed three custom Art Deco bronze pendant light
fixtures." In addition, a series of downlights were inserted in
both high and low ceilings. To illuminate the decorative ceiling,
halogen uplights were placed five feet below it. The rear entrance
arcade received downlights and a central row of flat, surface
mounted decorative fixtures.

The project received the Award of Excellence from the Society of
American Registered Architects New York Council and the building's
owners and tenants are extremely happy with the lobby's improved
appearance. "A project is only as good as the client," Rasic
commented. "In this case the client was extremely interested and
supportive throughout the project and willing to recognize the
potential added to their building by the restoration."

The Refectory of Hoffman Hall at General Theological Seminary

Built in 1900, Hoffman Hall's 5,500 square foot Refectory is a
dining hall, described by Gerald R. Wolfe in "New York: A Guide to
the Metropolis" as "one of New York's most beautiful interior
spaces." Although only the Gothic building's exterior is
landmarked, the interior is being restored to its original
appearance by Ernest Neuman Studios.

The white oak structural panels were found to have separated in
many places and veneer had delaminated. In addition, the wood was
coated with layers of varnish and shellac. Melissa Ford-Hart,
Principal at Ernest Neuman, explained they stripped the wood, let
it dry and then applied layers of dark dewaxed shellac. Cracked
wood was repaired by regluing, filling or replacement.

The decorative coffered plaster ceiling had a metallic finish that
had been overglazed and overpainted. Ford-Hart said exposure
windows were created to determine the original color scheme and
techniques before cleaning and scraping the plaster, filling in
missing places and then applying a metallic powder finish and dark
greenish blue glaze. The glaze was used to emphasize the contours
and sculptural details of the plaster's ornamentation before
application of a light greenish blue polychrome finish. Missing
ornamental plaster from the coffered panels and frame elements was

Much vacuuming and cleaning was done to the brick, limestone and
brownstone surfaces before installing new mortar as needed. Workers
had to wear protective equipment to remove pigeon droppings from
the work area with a bleach/water solution. Although the work on
the oak wainscoting and Musician's Loft is not complete, Ford-Hart
said, "For me, the space feels much more optimistic."

Help is available

The Conservancy can offer technical assistance on restoring
historic structures. "We have experts on staff who can help with
restoration questions," Breen said. "We can help designers find
craftspeople and materials and help you analyze your building on
both interior and exterior materials. If there are issues, we can
identify what's wrong and what's needed to fix it and we refer you
to people we know who are qualified to do the work."

For example, the Institute of International Education has the only
room in the city designed by Alvar Aalto. The Conservancy worked
with them for several years doing research on materials, what the
original design was and how to restore the space correctly.

History permeates NYC

"If you live in New York, you have to love buildings and you have
to care about buildings because that's what we are," said Breen.
"The layers of architecture and the more you know about them and
understand them, the richer the experience walking down a street,
the more interesting and beautiful New York becomes. It promotes
tourism. It promotes a daily quality of life. There are soul
satisfying reasons to save all this. There are economic reasons to
save all this. To me it's just central to how we live here.

"We've got nothing against great new buildings, but it shouldn't
come at the cost of an older great building," she continued. "A
sense of place is enormously important whether you're consciously
thinking of this or not. There are places that just lift you up and
that's what great architecture does. Buildings have a public face
and are, in a sense, a gift to the rest of us. People feel more
important and better in buildings that are better buildings."

Please click here to download printer friendly version of this article in PDF format.

See Drom Fine Fragrances Studio designed by Janko Rasic Architects on Yahoo! Video UK & Ireland: Video #1

See Drom Fine Fragrances Studio designed by Janko Rasic Architects on Yahoo! Video UK & Ireland: Video #1
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See Drom Fine Fragrances Studio designed by Janko Rasic Architects on Yahoo! Video UK & Ireland: Video #2

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