Queens Hospital Emergency Medical Services Station 50 uses the topography of its site to express the restless energy inherent in the program. The continuously inclined form rises up and out of the sloping sidewalk. It doubles back at the end of the site—culminating its escalating energy in a dynamic cantilever that overhangs the parking entry. The diagonal form pulses with the anticipation of movement, embodying the programmatic need for immediate action.
The new station forms the boundary between Queens Hospital and the surrounding community. To mediate these disparate scales, a long narrow plan that contends with the scale of the hospital is combined with a small two story section that respects the houses. An underground utility tunnel which traversed the site made siting the building and accomplishing all the required programming for both a station and a district headquarters extremely challenging. A structural solution of creating two concrete bearing wall abutments that transferred loading away from the utility tunnel allowed the building to be built adjacent to the tunnel with no structural damage to it. Spanning these walls are 165’ long steel trusses that resulted in the cantilever allowing the building to stretch the full length of the site. This interior trussed volume gave a distinct identity in the building to the district headquarters.
Patterned concrete walls and fritted glass reinforce the diagonal form of the building while the material identity is inspired by the ambulances that are seen from within the building: the taut glass, aluminum, and FDNY-red become interior and exterior materials. The powerful cantilever that opposes the slope of the street makes a powerful image for the building that is a reminder of the important role the Fire Department of New York plays in combatting the fear of small and large scale emergencies within the city.
Credits: Gerri Davis Dean/Wolf Architects, Lou Volpe The LiRo Group, Michael Mascaro The LiRo Group, Nelson Jenkins Lumen Architecture, Stephen Mueller Dean/Wolf Architects, Chris Kroner Dean/Wolf Architects, Neil Strandberg, PE Leonard Strandberg and Associates, Scott Druskin, PE Charles G Michel Engineering, Charles Michel, PE Charles G Michel Engineering, Ciro Cuono, PE Hage Engineering, Christine Yogiaman Dean/Wolf Architects, Richard Lee, PE Hage Engineering, Michael Cho Dean/Wolf Architects, Rich Gorman, AIA Reginald Hough Associates: Architectural Concrete, Dave Aggleton CPP, CPS Aggleton & Associates Security Consultants, Joe Tomei Calcedo Construction Corporation, Paul Warchol Paul Warchol Photography, William Gallo The LiRo Group, Andrew Cilley, PE Hage Engineering, Angelo Caiazzo Darcon Inc., Augie Martins Calcedo Construction Corporation, Gilles Poirier MoMetal Structures, Kathryn Dean, AIA, FAAR Dean/Wolf Architects, Mark Bunnell Quennell Rothschild & Partners, Reginold Hough, FAIA Reginald Hough Associates: Architectural Concrete, Robert Murphy, PE URS Corporation, Matt White Dean/Wolf Architects, Gabriel Bach Dean/Wolf Architects, Steve Lin, PE Future Tech Consultants of New York, John Pfeiffer Lumen Architecture, Renee Cooper, PE URS Corporation, Charles Wolf, AIA Dean/Wolf Architects