In the center of Far Rockaway in Queens, Marvel has begun an ambitious project to bring 1,700 new affordable housing units to an under-utilized site between the A train terminus and the Long Island Rail Road in order to create a more vibrant, supportive community through socially thoughtful design.
Over five phases totaling 1.7 million SF of development, the design reimagines the link between the MTA and LIRR stations as a series of new public spaces and streets, opening up the center of downtown Far Rockaway to the surrounding community. Across the street from the A train, a new public plaza flanked by 100,000 SF of commercial space will be the gateway to the project, leading to a total of six new residential blocks arranged along a tree-lined shared street. Each building participates in a carefully curated approach to the scale and character of the neighborhood, developed through an interactive process with the client and the Department of City Planning.
Rockaway Village is clad entirely in brick, ranging from near white to black. In a smooth gradient of 27 different brick blends, these skip across the buildings to create unique individual buildings, with a cohesive whole.
The circulation for each block allows a small number of units on each corridor, relying on the shared courtyard as a focal point of activity and a bridge to the larger neighborhood.
Each building participates in a carefully curated approach to the scale and character of the neighborhood, developed through an interactive process with the client and the Department of City Planning.
Stepping down to the nearby context and breaking up the street wall with a number of setbacks and shifts, the buildings navigate the irregularities of a complicated site and the difficulties inherent in adding density to a low density context.
The social structure of the project is one of nested communities with varying degrees of access. Some project amenities like the main plaza are shared with the whole neighborhood, whereas cluster courtyards are shared between the various building cores, and laundry rooms are exclusive to the residents of one elevator.
Future view of the completed development, Rockaway Village.