Gil-Bar Projects

Urban Glass House

"The Urban Glass House" at 330 Spring Street in SoHo is a very handsome, mid-rise, residential condominium building that was designed by Philip Johnson, who died in 2005 at the age of 98, and Alan Ritchie.

The 12-story building has 39 apartments and a penthouse unit and was developed by Glass House Development LLC, a partnership of Abram Shnay, Charles Blaichman and Scott Sabbagh.

Glass House Development LLC acquired the site and the architectural plans from Greenwich Street Partners LLC for about $24 million.

The project had been initiated by Antonio Nino Vendome and at one time Mr. Johnson had designed a 26-story, asymmetrical, torqued and flaring tower of many angles, colors and fa├žade treatments that was similar to designs subsequently developed by Frank O. Gehry for a major project, Atlantic Yards, for Forest City Ratner in Brooklyn.

The prior, flamboyant design, which was known as "the habitable sculpture," met with opposition from some community groups for being out of context with the neighborhood even though its cantilevered and complex form would have been one of the most interesting designs in the city.

Annabelle Selldorf, who has designed interiors for the Neue Gallerie on Fifth Avenue at 86th Street and the Museum for Biblical Art on Broadway at 62nd Street and for many prominent contemporary artists such as Jeff Koons, Eric Fischl and David Salle, designed the new building's lobby and interiors.

The sleek and elegantly-styled building takes its name from the famous 1949, one-story, glass-enclosed home in New Canaan, Connecticut, of Philip Johnson, who was the dean of American architecture in the late 20th Century. This building was Mr. Johnson's last project.

The building's facades have a high fenestration factor and its large square windows have five panes. The building is almost a cube with five small setback cutouts on 4th, 9th, 10th and 12th floors