Proj Overview

Project Overview

The Forest House apartments in New York takes affordable urban living to new sustainable green heights. The eight-story, 124-unit apartment project, located in the low-income area of the South Bronx, features a 10,000-square-foot rooftop greenhouse that provides produce to tenants and neighbors.

The project features precast concrete load-bearing architectural walls embedded with thin brick, hollowcore plank, and other precast concrete pieces, including stairs and landings, lintel beams, and parapets.

Precast Solution

Precast concrete helped with a number of the sustainable-design concepts, including using fly ash in the mixture and casting the components at a nearby plant.
Precast concrete in conjunction with a continuous inch- thick layer of XPS insulation, provided a 100% thermal separation of the building interior from the outside environment, creating high energy efficiency.

The precast was erected in four months, ensuring quick entry for interior trades to begin work so the project could meet its tight occupancy dates.


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Project Team


abs Architects, New York l Danois Architects, New York 


T.Y. Lin International, New York 

General Contractor

Blue Seas Development Co., New York


Blue Seas Development Co., New York 


Fabcon Precast, Edgewood, Md./Selkirk, N.Y. 

Precast Specialty Engineer

Equus Design, Belmont, Mass.

Key Project Attributes

  • Insulated precast concrete walls supply high energy efficiency.
  • Local manufacture of components reduces transportation energy and costs.
  • Fly ash used in concrete mix recycles waste and reduced cement requirements.
  • Precast's inorganic composition aids fire resistance and minimizes fire spread, allowing more time to contain it.
  • Inorganic composition of precast concrete ensures mold can't gain a foothold.
  • Insulated walls minimize exterior noise.
  • Storm water-recapture system provided by the precaster was instrumental in winning a grant from New York's Department of Environmental Protection for the project.
  • Embedded thin brick uses 15% less material than a traditional brick and mortar wall while offering a longer life expectancy and minimal maintenance.

Project/Precast Scope

  • Eight-story, 124-unit apartment building.
  • Approximately 110,000 square feet of 8-inch Elematic hollowcore planks
  • Approximately 24,500 square feet of 12-inch hollowcore plank
  • 190 pieces of 8-inch thick exterior bearing walls with thin brick
  • 180 pieces of 8-inch thick interior bearing walls
  • 34 pieces of precast concrete parapets
  • 49 pieces of precast concrete lintel beams
  • Precast concrete stairs and landings