The Dayton Street Residence stair is located in a building whose sustainable design intent was driven by the owner’s desire to maintain the building envelope of an existing property. Reusing the building’s envelope is inherently more sustainable than constructing a new building on a new site.
The new staircase was central to the design of the residence, transforming it from a series of dark rooms connected by concealed staircases, to a bright family home. The stair’s open risers and thin balusters and handrails allow for natural light to enter the space. A new circular skylight and punched openings within the angled stair bay allow for daylight delivery to every floor, maximizing use of daylight and reducing the use of electricity during the day.
Manufacturing and delivering the stair from Ironwood, Michigan, a small town 400 miles from the site in Chicago’s Lincoln Park neighborhood cut down on freight emissions.
This four-story 1880s townhouse in Lincoln Park was completely transformed from a series of dark rooms connected by narrow, concealed staircases into a light-filled family home. Central to the design program and linking all four floors, is the dramatic, elliptical staircase. Positioned within an existing angled bay with punched windows and crowned by a new circular skylight, the new open stair allows daylight to flood every floor.
Following many iterations of 2D designs, the stair was developed further using 3D CAD modeling to arrive at the desired final appearance of the steel members and establish a sequence for installation. For fabrication, the completed model was digitally flattened to a 2D CNC file whereby the stringer geometry and picket openings were plasma cut from flat steel plate ¾ inch thick. Stair sections were then rolled to form the inner and outer stringers and joined with steel plate tread supports, ultimately clad in white oak treads. Delivered to the site in seven separate pieces, the stair sections were dropped thru the skylight opening in the roof and installed from the bottom up. Following final attachment to structural steel framing members and anchors along the masonry wall, stair section joints were field welded and the assembly electrostatically painted.