Dattner Architects’ Selected Projects #1

History of Dattner Architects

Dattner Architects is a New York City-based design firm that creates captivating and impactful architecture. It was founded in 1964 by Richard Dattner.

Civic architecture is the cornerstone of Dattner Architects. They believe that each project should be appropriate for its time and place, be environmentally conscious, and inspire its users. The way Dattner works on its projects is shaped by the stakeholder engagement process. Through collaborative brainstorming with clients, interdisciplinary consulting teams, governmental organizations, and communities, the firm upholds a comprehensive design philosophy encouraging innovative solutions.

Dattner Architects has designed a diverse range of award-winning Essential Architecture projects. Essential Architecture is the critical infrastructure that enables urban life. Spaces such as transit facilities, repair shops, fire and police stations, etc. Dattner’s extensive background in municipal infrastructure design motivates them to see the system’s potential in the future. The company envisions a future where a constantly growing digital realm exchanges enormous amounts of data with the real world, enabling infrastructure to become more intelligent, environmentally conscious, and harmoniously integrated with its surroundings.

Richard Dattner AIA

Richard studied at the Architectural Association in London and received his Bachelor of Architecture from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology. He has taught design at Cooper Union, City College of New York, and the University of Wisconsin, and has frequently served as a visiting design critic and lecturer. Mr. Dattner was a former Trustee of the City Club of New York and Vice President of the AIA New York Chapter. He also served on the boards of the National Research Council’s Bureau of Infrastructure and the Constructed Environment and the American Revolution Bicentennial Commission.

The AIA New York Chapter bestowed the Medal of Honor on Richard, the Chapter’s highest honor for distinguished architecture. Richard was honored with the Thomas Jefferson Award from the American Institute of Architects for his significant contributions to public architecture. He is the author of «Design for Play» as well as «Civil Architecture: The New Public Infrastructure.»

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Company Culture at Dattner Architects

They are a mission-driven organization. Dattner’s work revolves around civic spaces and the urban experience. Through thoughtful programming, creative design, and engaged collaboration, they strengthen communities and transform environments. Their talented employees are grouped into knowledge communities that promote friendship and expertise. Dattner’s vibrant culture is built on a community of talented, passionate, and creative people who are drawn to their civic-minded work.

While working with us, you can expect the opportunity to design and realize meaningful, essential projects with mission-driven collaborators across the spectrum of building typologies.

Dattner Architects is committed to promoting a diverse, equitable, and inclusive work environment and is proud to be an Equal Opportunity Employer. Their Mentorship Program places mentees and mentors in strategic pairs to promote connections and professional growth throughout the office. Through coaching, encouragement, and shared experiences, participants in this program create strong, sustaining networks. In addition to the official program, daily mentoring takes place in project teams through brainstorming, studio presentations, and design pin-ups.

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Architect-US is proud to work in close contact with Dattner Architects and to be able to ensure the firm gets to know and work with amazing young architects like Shih-en Grace Chang whom we helped process and sponsor her J1 Visa as well as find her a job in the US through our Job+J1 Visa Program!

Shih-en Grace Chang

Canadian Architect Shih-en Grace Chang graduated with a Bachelor of Environmental Design with Honors from the School of Architecture and Landscape Architecture at the University of British Columbia. She continued her studies at the John H. Daniels Faculty of Architecture, Landscape, and Design at the University of Toronto for her Master of Architecture degree. In 2015 Grace won the People’s Choice Award at the Robson Redux Competition for her contribution to #iseeyou.

Grace was also an Architectural Research Assistant at the John H. Daniels Faculty, working with Professor Stephen Verderber and Professor David Lieberman. As an Architectural Research Assistant she participated in the research for the book “Innovations in Behavioral Health Architecture” and assisted in the design development of the project “At the Threshold.”

Dattner Architects Selected Projects

Cypress Hill East New York Community Center – Brooklyn, NY

The two-story community center anchors the bottom floor of Dattner Architects’ 14-story affordable mixed-use residential building, Chestnut Commons.

Chestnut Commons, developed and operated by locally based organizations with strong community ties, strengthens the neighborhood by providing economic development and educational opportunities, as well as arts programming and job training. The community center will serve as the primary office space for Cypress Hills Local Development Corp. (CHLDC), which also manages the center and develops the programming. The community center houses a large, adaptable lobby area, a café, a branch of Brooklyn Federal Credit Union, and a commercial kitchen that serves as an incubator for nearby culinary-based businesses in need of commercial cooking space in addition to being used for job training.

Among the spaces the center sublets to neighborhood businesses are a multipurpose room for parenting and youth classes, Housing Plus offices, a computer lab, offices and classrooms of Kingsborough Community College, a multipurpose/recreation facility with locker rooms, and offices and a classroom for construction job training.

Photos by Dattner

Carbon Copy – Northern Hemisphere

An existential threat to humanity is the loss of the planet’s natural ability to absorb carbon from the atmosphere as a result of widespread deforestation. With a design influenced by skyscrapers and roller coasters, Carbon Copy aims to increase the amount of carbon stored in the world’s surviving forests by creating a wooden structure that is both architecture and landform.

The ground is left open for ongoing plant growth, animal migration, and human passage as a tree-supporting modular grid adapts to topographic obstacles like hills and rivers. A high-tensile fabric pouch that is fastened to the wooden frame holds each tree that is planted. The system is practically infinitely replicable in forested areas. If constructed on a large enough scale, it will aid in reversing the negative effects of global deforestation and restoring the planet’s equilibrium.

Photos by Dattner

Children’s Adventure Garden – Dallas, TX

At the northernmost point of the Dallas Arboretum, the recently constructed eight-acre Rory Meyers Children’s Adventure Garden & Exploration Center offers an immersive learning environment. The purpose of the new Children’s Garden is to bring life to an underutilized, steeply sloping area of the expansive arboretum. Hundreds of children visit the garden every day. The diverse experience starts at the orientation amphitheater and consists of 17 interconnected learning galleries with accessible, meandering pathways so guests can explore at their own speed.

The Garden’s focal point is the Exploration Center. Nestled into the organic incline, the Center features hybrid indoor-outdoor educational spaces, inventive displays, and interactive technology designed to fulfill both state and federal science education requirements while enticing schoolchildren to investigate earth and biological sciences.

Reachable throughout the site, the 200-foot Texas Skywalk is an elevated architectural walkway that winds through a canopy of trees and rises 20 feet above the verdant undergrowth. From the tops of the trees to the ground below, the Skywalk and other exhibits offer distinctive perspectives on the relationships that exist between living things and their environments. The garden offers science support for schools to push students through more engaging methods while communicating science concepts in a way that is not feasible in a traditional classroom.

Photos by Dattner

We will be posting more projects by Dattner Architects in the upcoming weeks and months, so keep an eye out for more of their incredible work! Every Friday we will be posting a new Featured Company, so join us again next week!

Dattner Architects

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