CLIENT: JP Morgan Asset Management. SCOPE OF WORK: Architecture, Interior Design. SIZE: 59 000 SF. LOCATION: 55 West 26th Street. New York, NY. STATUS: Built 2018.

To reposition this residential building and appeal to the contemporary luxury market, the design team at S9 Architecture focused on the building’s urban context and transformative planning. To increase the building’s presence in the neighborhood, they relocated the entrance of Capitol at Chelsea from 26 Street to Sixth Avenue and reworked the façade. This spatial shift allowed the interior lobby to expand and take full advantage of natural light, transforming the once dark and confining areas. This gesture helped to form a clear connection with the exterior streetscape and greenery of neighboring Madison Square Park.

S9 converted an unused portion of the basement into a newly designed amenity space which includes a library, screening lounge, and a game/club room. This common space connects to the lobby via an exposed steel staircase, set into an opening carved into the lobby floor. This creates a soaring, double-height space that provides a visual as well as physical link between the two levels. The stair is defined by an undulating screen of slatted wood—a dramatic, abstracted reference to the trees in the park.

By drawing on the building’s contextual elements and selectively reinventing them, S9 creates a vital new identity for the Capitol at Chelsea that acknowledges its past while satisfying the needs and demands of the present.