From Yoshihara McKee Architects
This project combines two mid-Manhattan apartments vertically by opening up the floor and inserting a new staircase. From everywhere in the apartment there are views of the East River and the UN, so we selected a wall which would not disturb those views to inset the staircase on. This two story high volume and the staircase were designed to become the interior focal point of the enlarged apartment. The treads and steps were generated by bending a long strip of sheet steel. The entire structure is cantilevered from the wall with the support structure completely hidden. The thin ribbon of steel is much more delicate than the typical cantilevered staircase creating an ephemeral feeling - a ribbon floating in the air. The transparency thorough the steps maintains the views and opens the space. Spatial continuity is everywhere, there are no partition walls. Frosted glass divides the bathroom from the bedroom, bringing abundant sunlight from the east windows. The staircase and void provide a continuous connection between the bedroom at the upper floor and the living spaces downstairs.