New York, NY

141 East Houston Street


Constructed on the site of the Sunshine Cinema on the Lower East Side, the new glass-clad building offers boutique office space and ground-level retail. The 65,000 sq ft building steps back to blend with the surrounding streetscape and create a landscaped terrace. SGH consulted on the demolition of the existing theater, served as the structural engineer of record for the new building, and consulted on the building enclosure design.

The $52 million project included demolishing the existing theater, which had been reconstructed in 2001. SGH helped the demolition and temporary-shoring engineer locate bracing to least affect the new foundation, designed permanent supports for the party wall supporting an adjacent brownstone, and designed the new nine-story structure with two subgrade levels. Highlights of our structural design include:

  • Mat foundation with a concrete liner wall inboard of the theater’s foundation wall
  • Concrete beam at the top of the foundation wall extending over the existing foundation wall to the property line
  • Sloped steel columns extending from pilasters inboard of the liner wall to the property line at the second floor
  • Lateral system designed for the gravity eccentricity from the sloped columns in addition to wind and seismic forces
  • Structural steel superstructure with braced frames and concrete slabs on metal deck
  • Unbraced 60 ft tall columns supporting an ivy-and-vegetative wall in Sunshine Alley
  • Support for the articulated glass enclosure

We also consulted on the design of the building enclosure, including below-grade and terrace waterproofing, floor-to-ceiling curtain walls, aluminum-composite wall panels, and roofing. Highlights of our work include:

  • Reviewing the proposed design and helping select systems, considering strength, durability, and cost
  • Developing details to integrate adjacent enclosure systems, including a large exterior entry structure, and to address unique floor line conditions
  • Performing a building enclosure trade-off analysis to demonstrate energy code compliance
  • Analyzing heat and moisture migration for the typical building enclosure components to identify the optimal locations of air and vapor barriers to mitigate condensation
  • Calculating thermal/solar performance data used by the mechanical engineer to determine equipment sizes

SGH provided structural and building enclosure construction-phase services.

Project Summary



Completion Date
New Construction
Structures | Building Enclosures | Performance & Code Consulting
Commercial | Mixed-Use
East End Capital
Specialized Capabilities
Building Design | Facades & Glazing | Roofing & Waterproofing | Energy & Sustainability

Key team members

Kevin Poulin
Kevin Poulin
Sean O'Brien
Sean O'Brien
Building Technology Division Head, New York