Guttman Loft

Guttman Loft

Williamsburg, Brooklyn, NY, USA
Project Year
Private Houses

Guttman Loft

JIDK as Designers
  • What existed in the space before? This was the last remaining sponsor unit in this loft conversion. The former tenant was an artist and the loft was almost completely raw and without accommodations
  • Is there anything unique about the location? Located in the heart of Williamsburg, the former Hinds & Ketcham lithography building was converted into lofts in 2009 with original architectural elements preserved. The building used to be occupied by artists.
  • What is the surrounding neighborhood like? North 3rd street is in the heart of Williamsburg and one of the most heavily transformed streets.
  • Were there other renovations made to the space? As part of the renovation, the entire roof structure of the unit reinforced to accommodate usage of the roof; a bulkhead and interior stair was constructed; windows were replaced, and central air was installed. A substantial hot tub was also installed on the roof deck


Project Questions / JIDK’s Involvement

  • How did JIDK get involved with the project? We have worked with Mr Guttman? on several  other projects and decided to take on a residential project since it was for him.
  • Who at JIDK should be credited? Thomas Jensen, Kimberly Pelkofsky, Brigid Bjorklund
  • Should anyone else, not at JIDK, be credited? Yes: Contruction by ZT Maximum Construction, lighting design by Scott Watson of SWA lighting design, architectural services by JAM Consultants, MEP engineering by Guth Deconzo Consulting Engineers, PC, Structural Engineering by Cuono Engineering, Low voltage by Tarr Technology Consulting, project management by Moon Group, roof landscaping by ?


Project Questions / Design

  • Can you walk us through the space? The first visual punch when you enter the space is immediate and strong - you enter into the main living room that holds the kitchen, dining area and living room with double height ceilings, a skylight, exposed wood columns and beams and a large David Weeks pendant suspended over the dining room table.
  • What features are unique from other residential spaces you’ve worked on? 15’ ceilings, roof deck, exposed structure, original fire door.
  • How does the design speak to the client’s goal? We managed to incorporate all the little spaces that makes for a great home into an open loft space. The space is a home first and loft second, and as such great care was taken to create a comfortable space without disrupting the grandeur and history of the raw space. The client wanted an honest loft for full time living and every inch of the layout is being used by the family.
  • Is the client selling or keeping the loft? Keeping for the moment, may sell in the future
  • Were any special considerations made in terms of design? Were there any restrictions? There were many complications in adding the roof deck and bulkhead/stair to the original scope of the project without compromising the programme, but ultimately adding the stair created the grand central space and allowed light into the previously unlit back area of the space. It felt natural to put the kitchen and gathering functions under this skylight and create generous rooms along the windows - and connect these rooms with doors that hide away to reveal the original space undivided.
  • Were any elements kept from the previous space? Special care was taken to keep the beams and columns visible. Exposed brick walls were maintained, and the original fire door was incorporated into the bathroom design.
  • What were the objectives for the space? What was the design intent? To create a family loft that was true to its past; had an authentic Williamsburg atmosphere and an interesting use of vertical space.
  • Were there any challenges? Maintaining the exposed beams was very tricky when it became apparent that we needed to reinforce the roof in order to build the deck. Structural steel was added to every beam and ceiling joist allowing the bottoms of the beams to be left exposed.
  • What materials are you using? Any sustainable elements? We used a fairly discrete palette to highlight the raw power of the original columns and bricks. We installed walnut flooring and millwork throughout to keep the warm colors and painted the walls in shades of white to emphasise the artwork.
  • Any unique features / rooms? (Sliding barn doors, walk-in closet, roof deck, etc) Sliding fire door to laundry room was procured by the client in Detroit galley style master bath with freestanding tub and exposed shower, original fire door in master bath, a pass-through walk in closet, roof deck, roof kitchen, hot tub, custom millwork, vintage David Weeks light fixture, skylights
  • Any custom elements? custom millwork in master bathroom, custom steel and glass wall at home office, custom AV/ music and library shelving, custom stainless steel kitchen and island
  • Any special technology incorporated into the design? The entire apartment is wired with the latest tech and everything from lighting to thermostats can be accessed remotely. All lighting is dim-to-warm LEDs which saves on electricity while allowing full spectrum dimming. All HVAC ducting is hidden from view and provided via a split system located on the roof
  • What else should we know? From start to finish this was a 3 year project to make this the dream loft of the client. Many complications with the building and structural elements of the space led to explorations and studies in almost every scale, and the final result incorporates most of these findings in details big and small.
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