Buffalo RiverWorks Entertainment Complex
Abstract Architecture provided design and construction administration services from the inception of this exciting and transformative Buffalo River front project. We proudly accepted a 2016 AIA Buffalo/WNY design award for this project. The project took a soon to be vacated and abandoned industrial site on the Buffalo River and transformed it into a bustling year round entertainment complex. With road and river dock access, two covered hockey rinks, a professional roller derby team, Buffalo’s own Queen City Roller Girls of the WNY all-women roller derby league and a soon to open brewery housed in a grain elevator, Buffalo RiverWorks has become the “place to be” on the Buffalo River.
As much of the two existing structures as possible was saved, with the main entertainment space, and new back of house facilities (locker rooms, kitchen and delivery) housed in new infill construction that connected the separate buildings into one 60,000 square foot complex. The main floor can be quickly transformed from accommodating 2,500 people watching roller derby to upward of 5,000 people in concert format, all the time also being able to function as a full service restaurant. A mix of large and smaller semi-private, indoor and outdoor areas are intended for multiple events to be held at the same time.
Rose Garden Residence
Originally Built for Charles Rand Penney, the new owners of this Buffalo New York residence undertook a complete renovation to make the house their own. The work included revising the dated design, addressing poor circulation within the residence and providing improved access to the ample property. Both first and second floors underwent extensive renovations to improve livability and handle the day to day grind of family life. The final design provides separate private areas for individual family members while still maintaining spaces where the family can come together.
Working closely with the Client and then the contractor, Abstract Architecture provided design services for the interior renovation to this beautiful Allentown cottage. The project objective was to unify the house, closer to its original form, removing the remnants of previous renovations and the past conversion to a two-apartment occupancy.
The removal of two small rooms and a loft from the rear section of the house allowed for the undersized kitchen to be expanded, allowing adequate space for the addition of a dinning area. The removal of these barrier spaces also permits direct access to the rear deck and beautiful city rear yard. The glazed opening also provides abundant natural light.
Minor changes were made to the living area, focusing of comfort and ensuring natural light and an under-stair ½ bath was relocated and reconfigured to provide a compact full bathroom, ideal for overnight guests and visiting family.
It would have been embarrassing if we had not been retained to design our own office space, but we were so onward and upward. A bold color and material pallet was utilized to create a fun yet comfortable work space, with lots of natural light. Feel free to stop by and check it out, you never know, one of the office puppies may be napping in the corner.
Photo: Kim Smith Photo
Of The Sea
Abstract Architecture partnered with Wrafterbuilt Furniture and Emerson James, Inc. for this hip, slightly off-keel office space located in the historic Genesee Gateway complex. The design team had the most enjoyable time working with a client who not only had a very particular company image to present, but wanted to do so in a fun and exciting way. Maintaining a largely open plan entry and work area was critical and allowed for the best utilization of a tight space. Despite the limited square footage available for this tenant build-out, there are still dedicated areas for video production, coffee and group meetings. The most heavily utilized work areas are located towards the street front of the suite so that natural light fills them, with custom light fixtures intended to add a sense of drama to particular rooms. The color palette was intentionally left neutral so that the natural materials of the furnishings would be emphasized.
Animal Outfitters @ 500 Seneca
Abstract Architecture PC worked with the team at Animal Outfitters on their second store, this time also providing doggy daycare services. The space is laid out so to maximize the use of a smallish sized tenant space and to optimize access from both the street frontage and an inner courtyard.
The ability to optimize natural light throughout the kennel area via the large glazed openings on both sides of the space and the flexibility to change the layout of play pens allows for quick reorganization of the space in response to daily population variations, make the space feel much larger than it really is. Smaller, separated spaces, also with sizable internal glazing, were created for entry & sales, K-9 bathing & grooming facilities and an office.
Located in the resurgent Hydraulics District at the newly renovated Five Hundred Seneca, the finish palette was selected from materials reflective of the existing historic building. Exposed concrete (floors & counter-tops), metal (supports, wall panels & movable barricades) and exposed wood (paneling & shelving) are utilized not only for their beauty, but also their inherent resilience under the most difficult of conditions.
A steady flow of visitors, both 2 & 4 legged, make this a fun stop for anybody with a love of man's best friend.
Designed by George Metzger and built in 1892 for Charles J Heinold as a wholesale grocery store & liquor house, 313 Broadway is currently a construction site that will soon be the new home for Abstract Architecture PC. While work on the conversion from its previous use as a hardware store slowly makes progress, this beautiful 3 story building will eventually be a mix of commercial office space and a private residence. By locating our offices at 313 Broadway, Abstract Architecture PC is not only within walking distance of the heart of our great city, it places the firm at the center of development on Buffalo's resurgent east side. It also reinforces our belief that the City has reached that magic tipping point ushering in a period of unheralded rebirth!
We will keep you updated as work continues and the date for a grand opening party is announced.
Photo: Kim Smith Photo
Fire House Engine No.24 Hook & Ladder No.7 was originally built in 1894, and it served the City of Buffalo for 113 years before being closed in 2004. While showing its age and suffering from neglect from lack of use, it was obvious from first impressions that the building had the heart and soul to be a simply amazing renovation. Abstract Architecture PC worked with the current owner on the complete renovation of the 10,000 sf building for its conversion from a City storage site to a mix of rental apartments and a private residence. We were mindful of the original E.B Green designed architecture and detailing, preserving what was possible yet still ensuring the renovated building met current codes and living standards. Careful attention to detail was required to ensure that original casework and finishes could be saved, repaired where possible, and repurposed as functional elements in the new spaces where needed.
Elmwood Village Kitchen
This city living couple needed a little more space to make their existing compact kitchen all that much more functional. With the additional desire to improve access to a beautiful backyard, a small addition to the rear of the house, the careful redesign of the room and lots of hidden storage, this makeover created a truly usable center for daily life.
This interior residential renovation combined a group of undersized, gloomy rooms (with lots of dark wood paneling and trim) into a spacious family oriented kitchen, complete with a sizable gathering space filled with natural light, ideal for homework! Not only were the floorplan and finishes reworked and several structural issues with the original residence resolved, an additional bedroom suite was added above the existing attached garage. With work spearheaded by the homeowners, this renovation helped infuse new life into an already beautiful family home.
Ellicottville Stone House
This new residence, located in the outskirts of Ellicottville NY, is being built by its owners literally one stone at a time. Now fully enclosed, yes we have to update our photo, the owners are now racing towards completion, currently focusing on the interior details, wood trims and decorative finishes.
The kitchen and Living Room dominant an intentionally open first floor plan, a centrally located, oversized stone fireplace with a heavy wood mantel and an single steep elevation change, are the only barrier elements needed to define the different spaces. Refinished and re-glazed patio doors provide both views of the thick natural foliage of the gully outside, and plentiful natural illumination. A large wine cellar and a naturally cooled food locker dominate the basement, an exterior entry also functions as a stone retaining wall that provides a protective barrier to the home that is located on a steep sloping site.
Perfectly sized second floor bedrooms are about cozy comfort over excess size. The Attic can eventually be developed into a master suite if or when desired. A Single bathroom not only has all the typical amenities, but also amazing views on the snow capped valley beyond.
East Aurora Home
Abstract Architecture has competed the design work for two additions to this residence in East Aurora, the first a semi-formal dining room, the latest an expansion of a small living room adjacent to the main foyer. The desire of the home owners was to take a space that was essentially unusable due to its lack of size and make it a functioning element of the home. The enlarged room was always intended to provide space for an ever expanding collection of art pieces, but with the inclusion of a spiral staircase it also became the access point to a lofted space overlooking the foyer. The loft was an ideal location for a study/homework space for the younger members of the family. The addition also help define the exterior main entry, where a covered walkway helps create a more interesting and enjoyable approach to the front door.
Located on Kensington Ave in Snyder, Salt Cuisine was a small footprint commercial storefront build-out that resulted in a dynamic space intended to meet the needs of contemporary food retail. The front of house customer space blends seamlessly with the kitchen, the prep space hidden only by a single wall, allowing the shopper to seem all aspects of the culinary preparations. Guests stop in to pick up fabulous snacks, specialty prepared foods to take home for the family, or stay for a private dinner.
North Buffalo Kitchen
Abstract Architecture worked with the homeowner to redesign the exiting kitchen to resolve numerous program and environmental issues. Working within the confines of the existing kitchens foot print, we ensured that not only was the work area made more conducive for cooking and prep, providing a much desired island, but also increasing the amount of storage and providing a compact ½ bath.
The abundant north light from the large areas of single pane glazing was critical for the owner to be maintained, as was the smooth flow from the kitchen into the traditional dinning room. New structural members and over-sized windows ensured that the natural illumination was kept. The addition of the rear deck and direct access from the kitchen makes the space much more accessible and creates a focal transition space for the residence. The completed renovation enabled the homeowners to enjoy a more comfortable indoor/outdoor life style.
Additional minor renovations including improved lighting and new hard wood flooring were also undertaken in areas of the first floor.
Orchard Park Kitchen
A desire for a kitchen ideal for those large food centric family holidays lead this Orchard Park couple to the not only eliminate a little used formal dining room, but also add a ten foot deep addition across the rear of the residence. Structural elements for the second floor are located so to aid in defining three distinctive spaces. With plenty of wall storage and a massive island, the cooking area is laid out to be open to the entire space, allowing the cook to work while remaining a central figure in the party. The middle area provides access to the rear deck and is home to an oversized dining room table that gets used equally for meals and homework. A work nock for the home office backs on to a lowered informal seating area complete with a fireplace that ensures the entire family has a space to retreat to and yet remain connected.