This house for a bachelor began as a one-story workshop that occupied the entire 22’x100’ site. The pre-existing condition of a built-full lot meant that, according to NYC zoning regulations, if we don’t enlarge the house, we need not comply with typical residential requirements such as a 30’ rear yard. Thus we got to build something very difficult for New York: an atrium house, built around a courtyard.

The house gives maximum exposure to the outdoor space and a sense of intimate privacy. In some neighborhoods this would spoil an array of adjacent, verdant backyards. But this is a mixed-use block. The neighbor to the east is a built-full recording studio, for example. Both the living room and the bedroom suite (bedroom and bath) open completely to the courtyard through folding glass doors.