Architects don't cut corners with trio of Jenga-like towers

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416-420 Kent Avenue is slated to become a major feature of the Williamsburg, Brooklyn skyline(Credit: bloomimages)

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ODA New York has unveiled a bold and ambitious project slated for South Williamsburg, Brooklyn. 416-420 Kent Avenue comprises a trio of blocky residential towers, each with an unusual Jenga-like form that serves to maximize natural light and views, while also creating outdoor terraces for some occupants.

ODA has a history of producing unusual blocky buildings, but the firm offers a good argument that each crazy cantilever and weird twist serves a practical purpose beyond mere aesthetics. For example, its previous concept twists dramatically to increase views, while another stretches upwards, adding private garden space to a skinny skyscraper. It's a similar story with 416-420 Kent Avenue.

The project will comprise three 22-story towers, with some 800,000 sq ft (74,322 sq m) of residential floorspace and 857 homes between them (20 percent designated affordable housing). The pushed-out modules create outdoor terraces, though larger terraced areas with swimming pools will also be available.

More importantly though, the pushed-out sections of the buildings are placed to ensure occupants enjoy maximum natural light and views. The units will look towards the Williamsburg Bridge, the East River, and downtown Manhattan.

"Traditionally, apartment dwellers have had to spar for the four coveted corner units framing each floor of any standard building," ODA explains, regarding the design. "Future residents of 416-420 Kent will side-step this battle with corner units comprising more than 80 percent of the 857 apartments which compose Kent's towers.

Using two standard floor plans and mirroring them around the central axis, ODA creates three distinct towers featuring multi-dimensional facades and mid-floor 'corner' units. These shifts in floor plan will use cantilevering to create private garden terraces – another ODA trademark and coveted rarity in the city."

416-420 Kent Avenue has been given the go-ahead by city planners and is currently under construction. We've no word on estimated completion date yet but it looks likely to become an attractive and very eye-catching addition to the burgeoning Williamsburg skyline.

Source: ODA New York

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