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Hunters Point Community Library

Long Island City, Queens, NY

This new 6-story, 80-foot-tall library has cast-in-place concrete facades with large and irregular cutouts. The building program includes an adult reading collection, areas for kids and teens, a cybercenter, a conference room, and an outdoor amphitheater.

The multi-story facade cutouts presented the project’s biggest structural design challenge. Silman carefully tracked the path of the forces down to the pile foundation, coordinating placement of steel beams and limiting long-term potential for deflection and cracking. The building’s often-discontinuous floor framing and lack of interior walls presented difficulties in laterally bracing the exterior walls. Silman’s engineers solved this through closely coordinating with the architect on the placement of a few steel beams that span the full building width.

Located on a prominent site along the East River, the modern library building is easily distinguished from afar by its metallic-painted concrete facade. The building’s relatively small footprint on its site leaves room for public green space for the community.

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