Via Verde is a new affordable, sustainable residential development providing for healthy, urban living in the South Bronx. The winning entry in the international New Housing New York Legacy Competition, sponsored New York City HPD, the AIA New York, NYSERDA and Enterprise Community Partners, it reflects a public commitment to create the next generation of social housing. Designed by Dattner Architects with Grimshaw, the 222 apartments are arranged in three distinct building types—a 20-story tower at the north end of the site, a 6- to 13-story mid-rise duplex apartment component in the middle, and 2- to 4-story townhouses to the south.
A dynamic garden serves as the organizing element for the community. The garden begins as a ground level courtyard and then spirals upwards through a series of programmed, south-facing roof gardens, creating a promenade for residents. A terrace and community room at the top floor of the tower offers dramatic views. The multifunctional gardens create opportunities for active gardening, fruit and vegetable cultivation, recreation and social gathering, while also providing the benefits of storm water control and enhanced insulation.
The building takes the form of a “tendril” rising from grade to the tower, enclosing the courtyard and emphasizing a relationship to the natural world. The ground floor features retail, a community health center, and live-work units, creating a lively street presence. The top floor of the tower contains a multi-purpose community room with access to a terrace and spectacular views. Via Verde – The Green Way achieved LEED NC Gold certification.