Enclave at the Cathedral

Client Brodsky Organization
Location New York City, NY
Status Completed in 2016

Enclave uses concrete as both cladding and structure, evoking the essence of ecclesiastical Gothic architecture in a modern way.

Enclave is a new residential development located on the campus of Manhattan's Cathedral of St. John the Divine, the fourth largest Cathedral in the world. The new residences sit adjacent to the Cathedral, on a site that housed stone sheds and more recently a surface parking lot; the sheds were used by masons to carve the stone for the Cathedral’s construction.

The fifteen-story building is separated into two volumes along its 113th Street frontage and takes advantage of its steeply sloping site by connecting the volumes below a new grand stair that opens views to the Cathedral Transept and connects it to the street. The carving of both buildings’ corners and setbacks further opens views to the Cathedral from the surrounding streets.

Enclave is set back on all sides, providing an extension of the Cathedral campus by bringing the landscaping to the street edge. The building is stepped to open views of the Cathedral’s North Tower, and a new landscaped plaza was created at the intersection of West 113th Street and Amsterdam Avenue. Additionally, a new cloister garden was created between Enclave and the Cathedral building.

Enclave’s façade is composed of a series of shaped cast-in-place structural concrete ribs, inspired by the Cathedral’s buttresses. The depth of the ribs varies along West 113th, creating an articulated façade that changes as one moves around the building. When viewed obliquely, the ribs obscure the glazing and unify as a building face. At the top of the building, the concrete ribs taper and separate from the glass façade. At the bottom, this same tapering increases the landscape border.

The hand-chiseled concrete of the stepped Amsterdam Avenue façade recalls the work that once took place on the site and presents a quiet deferential expression to the Cathedral. Along Morningside Drive, the solidity of the building diminishes, and becomes an abstract form of glass contained within a delicate concrete frame.

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Inside, the entrance lobby connects the buildings by way of a sky-lit lobby gallery below the new Grand Stair to the North Transept.

The gallery includes a program of changing works by local artists. The buildings’ lounge connects directly to the outdoor terrace overlooking Morningside Park. The building’s interior materials take cues from both the new modern building and the Cathedral with use of dark oak floors and limestone.


2020 Citation Award, Residential Architect Design Awards - ARCHITECT Magazine 2017 Housing Design Award - Boston Society of Architects / AIA New York Design Excellence Award - Society of American Registered Architects New York A+ Award Special Mention: Multi-Unit Housing - Architizer A+ Award Special Mention: Concrete - Architizer 2016 Long List, Residential Award - World Architecture News


Design Architect Architect of Record Interior Designer

Design Partner(s)

Concrete Consultant - Architectural Concrete


Bruce Damonte David Paler Pavel Bendov Adrian Wilson