Announcement | May 4, 2009

El Jardin De Selene Tops Off 40 Days Ahead of Schedule


On March 20, a topping out ceremony was held for El Jardin de Selene, a new LEED Silver affordable apartment development at Melrose Avenue and East 158th Street in the Melrose section of the Bronx.  Marc Jahr, President of NYCHDC, lauded the South Bronx for its ongoing creative and vibrant neighborhood revitalization, an example not just for NYC, but for the entire nation.


Attended by local dignitaries, including State Senator Ruben Diaz, Jr. and Bronx Borough President Earl Brown, the event celebrated the topping out of the 12-story affordable housing development designed by award-winning Magnusson Architecture and Planning PC (MAP).  Further cause to celebrate is the fact that El Jardin de Selene is a full forty days ahead of schedule in spite of the economic downturn.


Developed by an innovative joint venture of Nos Quedamos, MJM Construction Services LLC, and Melrose Associates, this mixed-use development will achieve a Silver LEED rating. Yolanda Gonzalez, Executive Director of Nos Quedamos, says, “We have been a champion for sustainability in the neighborhood since its inception. Magnusson Architecture & Planning helped us reach our goal by designing our greenest building yet.”


In addition to a LEED Silver rating, El Jardin de Seline will be NYSERDA Energy Star certified and Enterprise Green Communities compliant. “We met the  stringent energy requirements for this project  through a variety of sustainable strategies including: daylight and occupancy sensors in common areas; energy star fixtures and appliances; bamboo flooring; green roofs at setbacks; recycled content; energy efficient windows; and thru-plank ventilation and solar panels on the building’s roof,” says Petr Stand, MAP principal.


“We believe sustainable design is important to our communities,” says Manny Kanaris of MJM Construction Services. “In addition to being better for our health and the health of the environment, it makes a building more efficient and more affordable in the long term.  Our innovative partnership with Nos Quedamos and MAP made it possible to develop an elegant, sustainable home for residents while maintaining affordability.”


The development provides rental units in an array of studio, 1- and 2-bedroom apartments. Residents have access to over 2,000 square feet of community space, including a laundry room, and an outdoor courtyard at the second level. The building also includes 6,000 square feet of commercial space and over 12,000 square feet of structured parking.  Mindful of the rich architectural heritage of the Bronx, MAP incorporated art deco elements into the project’s design.


MAP has been designing innovative community-based projects since 1985. Current projects include:  several new housing and mixed-use developments throughout the boroughs of New York City, as well as developments in the Hudson Valley, Long Island and New Jersey.  Other current and past MAP clients include: Phipps Houses, Volunteers of America, the Jewish Board of Children and Family Services, CPC Resources, Ridgewood Bushwick Senior Citizens Council, Inc., Fifth Avenue Committee, and BFC Construction.