New York Magazine — "The Elemental Architecture of Jeanne Gang"

"If Gang has a signature, it’s not stylistic but philosophical: Her architecture is an ongoing negotiation with nature."



"The building at 1815 Sterling Place in Brownsville is still pristine, its golden fire poles shiny, its concrete unscuffed and flame-red terra-cotta trim unchipped. Brooklyn’s newest fire station, headquarters for the borough’s only rescue company, was designed by Studio Gang, the firm Jeanne Gang founded in Chicago in 1997. But the building isn’t hers anymore: Captain Liam Flaherty, a 29-year Fire Department veteran, looks around with a proprietary air. 'This is basically the firefighter’s Swiss Army knife,' he says. 'We used to be in an 1893 building that was made for horses. We couldn’t even unload any equipment without pulling the rig onto the sidewalk. So this — this is beautiful.'

A decade later, Gang and her firm are doing the same in New York, in so many different ways that her projects could almost be the work of several entirely disparate, equally talented architects. There’s the fire station in Brownsville, an apartment tower in downtown Brooklyn (11 Hoyt Street), an office building near the High Line, and an addition to the American Museum of Natural History. As different as they are, each is a lyrical expression of a prosaic challenge: need transfigured into structure, structure into art.

Fire Rescue 2 doesn’t have the luxury of self-indulgent design: The architecture is only as good as the job it does, and its job is to help firefighters save lives. Every second it adds to a routine is a potentially lethal liability; every skill it helps hone represents someone’s shot at survival. Talking to me, Flaherty flicks through the features that help train specialists in a spectacular array of disasters — a manhole that drops down to a warrenlike basement that can be filled with fake smoke, a balcony for high-angle rescues, a trench that mimics a construction-site collapse, an elevator that can be deliberately knocked out of order, and a 50-foot wall for rappelling, dangling, and hoisting. . . .

It’s bracing, if a little ghoulish, for an architect to confront all the ways a building can kill people, but it’s part of what makes this small, tough, and pragmatic building, far from the corridors of glamorous design, such a perfect emblem of an unusual practice. The stakes don’t preclude elegance, though — they practically require it. Gang has built an office full of good listeners, and with the Sterling Place project, they paid close attention to the voices of experience, voices like Flaherty’s."

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New York Times — “Preparing the Best for the Worst”

New York Times -- “Preparing the Best for the Worst”

Currently under construction, the Studio’s Rescue Company 2 in Brownsville, Brooklyn, is featured in the New York Times.