New civic architecture in this city has a penchant for the bland (or, inexplicable), so James Russell's visit up to East 151st Street in the Bronx brings a small tear to our eye. He's there to visit the recently-opened $66-million Prevention Assistance and Temporary Housing Center (PATH) designed by Ennead Architects, which replaces the notorious Emergency Assistance Unit "that had for decades symbolized the city’s inability to cope with homeless families." In contrast, the new digs serve an estimated 3,400 families each month and are open 24 hours a day.
Take it away on the archi-criticism, James! The "wedge-shaped, seven-story building patterned in a vibrant mix of oranges, reds and grays" sticks out among a sea of nondescript gray low-rises, and its "richly textured surface invigorates a building that could so easily have been a bureaucratic fortress."
· From Bronx Horror to Beacon of Hope [Bloomberg]