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Project Information
Owner: New York Law School
Owner's Representative : V V A LLC
Architects: SmithGroup Inc. & BKSK Architects
Role: Construction Manager, At-Risk
Contract Value: $100 Million
Size: 213,000-SF/9 stories
Completion Date: June 2009

Pavarini McGovern completed construction of a new, approximately 209,000-SF academic building located at 185 West Broadway in Manhattan for NY Law School. This project is a major phase of NY Law’s expansion program, supporting their planned growth at the Worth Street campus. The facility consists of five stories above- and four levels below-grade, in an “L” shaped plan with a slurry wall, bathtub foundation. The new building is located on the southeast corner of Leonard Street and West Broadway adjacent to the existing NY Law School facility in lower Manhattan. The work included a new multi-story connector to join existing NY Law School buildings with the new one. Due to a high water table, pre-trenching and installation of a slurry wall system was required to create a waterproof concrete bathtub. The foundation walls and load bearing elements (LBEs) reach bedrock at approximately 100ft. This work constituted nearly 40% of the project’s scope.

The new building is primarily a curtain wall clad box from the second through the fifth floors. Stone and painted metal cladding and stainless steel details provide aesthetic accents at the base of the building.  The exterior enclosure along the north façade consists of a structural glazing system spanning from the second level through the fourth floor. Minimal details of the assembly will enhance visibility into the interior public space beyond. A grand stair runs along this façade connecting the entry level to the fifth floor. A setback at the fifth floor provides an outdoor dining terrace. A highly transparent storefront assembly encloses the fifth floor. An open metal trellis projecting from the fifth floor roof covers setback areas. The ground floor exterior wall consists of a glass storefront system along the west entry and a solid wall with granite cladding and clerestory windows along the north façade.

Deep vertical mullions with fritted or coated glass run along the curtain wall on the west side to aid in sun control. The plan called for major signage “wings” and entry canopies at the primary northwest and the secondary mid-block entrance at the building’s south side.  The south elevation uses the same family of materials, but with the primary façade rendered in stone cladding and punched windows, modulated to help echo and form a transition to the early 20th Century structures adjoining the new building.  A curtain wall system overlays on the stone façade from the second floor to the fifth floor.

The interior program consists of instruction space, a 300-seat auditorium, Socratic-form classrooms, seminar rooms, learning centers/computer labs and moot courts.  The Mendik Law Library with its various collections, including 500 rare books also finds its new home at 185 West Broadway.  The program also included support facilities, student & faculty dining facilities, and state-of-the-art A/V and technology systems.  Phase II administrative space will include the dean’s office, and the offices of academic affairs, admissions, finance and administration, development and alumni relations, professional development and public affairs.

The basement levels required phased excavation and foundation work, incorporating the installation of a slurry wall system, ultimately creating a waterproof concrete bathtub foundation.  After site mobilization and the demolition of the existing narrow building to the east on Leonard Street, work on the foundation wall included pre-trenching, slurry wall installation, and the “top down” construction of the basement levels one through four.  The slurry wall reaches bedrock at a depth of approximately 100 feet.  The existing water table is at a depth of approximately 15 feet below-grade.  Caissons bearing on rock support the remainder of the building.

The project is located within proximity of a subway line under West Broadway, which required our project team to coordinate daily with the MTA. This project is enrolled in our national safety partnership program with OSHA.

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