Perched atop a six-story landmarked building in the historic TriBeCa neighborhood, a dark and poorly configured penthouse space is transformed into an “urban oasis”. With an abundance of natural light, openness and connectivity between interior and exterior spaces, the penthouse’s fusion of structure and landscape reveal unsurpassed vistas of the dramatic downtown skyline amidst the water towers characteristic of the neighborhood. Portions of the existing penthouse structure were cut-out to maximize outdoor space as extensions of the apartment interior. The project features 5,000 square-feet interior space with more than 7,000 square feet of exterior gardens including an interior courtyard, rooftop meadow and multiple exterior terrace spaces. The exterior design weaves diverse landscape features and horticultural typologies within, around and above the contemporary penthouse into a unique and dynamic urban garden experience. Organized by three principal systems—topographic surface, modulated floor elevations and vertical vegetation, the design weaves together these elements to develop a seamless expansion of the penthouse interior that heightens the sense of journey through and among the various exterior spaces. The multi-faceted design organizes diverse planting systems carefully knitted with building infrastructure to expand and blur transitions between interior and exterior spaces to establish a unified multi-level penthouse design. The garden design merges crisp architectural geometries with soft topographic forms and vegetation to create a harmonious and elegant residential landscape floating in the downtown Manhattan skyline. Within the penthouse’s main living space, a glass enclosed Atrium Garden showcases a shaded woodland with low groundcovers surrounding a sculptural tree and staircase feature connecting with an upper level roof garden. The rooftop garden features a sculptural sun-deck, integrated seating elements, a hot tub and an expansive paved terrace with a lush lawn for lounging and entertaining. Surrounding the wooden deck, a series of undulating knolls depict a rolling prairie to visually increase the sense of spatial layering while subtly masking building mechanical systems. Back on the main level, the South Terrace garden links with a sunken dining area via a stepped promenade, visually separated by a grove of aspen trees surrounding a serene reflection pool feature. Linear meadow swathes and wooden seating elements emerge from the terrace surface. Vertical treillage systems showcase lush seasonal floral and foliage displays, unify terrace levels and visually accentuate urban views beyond. Surrounded by louvered privacy screen walls, garden terraces expand the Master Suite. A linear wood deck platform bordered by a long stone bench extends from the bedroom into a large vegetated berm backdrop and egress stairs. From the bathroom, an intimate balcony of low woodland surface plantings and large river stones are screened by bamboo clusters for added privacy. SPECIAL FACTORS • Design coordinates with complex infrastructural engineering to accommodate weight loads associated with intensive tree plantings and water features suspended over crawl space for maintenance access required by the building. • Floor surface designed to emphasize level changes as “topographic” expression • Stepped terrace design and vertical trellis elements mitigate varied roof levels, parapet heights so that the vegetation appears to “grow” from floor surface while meeting interior floor elevations. • Growing medium profiles designed for many varied site conditions to accommodate varied load restrictions while providing continuous root zones to maximum depth possible for long-term growth. • Custom reflection pool and water rill feature designed for continuous year-round operation and contains integrated UV filtration system • Fixed furniture elements appear to extend from flooring and bend into functional seating elements and as sculptural objects.