Office-to-Apartment Conversion of a Modern Skyscraper

Evaluating redevelopment prospects through the lens of a speculative design competition
By clicking "Register", you acknowledge that you have read BNP Media’s Privacy Policy, agree to its terms, and consent to allow BNP Media to use your information consistent with the Privacy Policy. You agree your information submitted will be shared with the sponsor(s) of the webinar. To read our Privacy Policy, please click here
Webinar On-Demand
Sponsored by The Steel Institute of New York
Presented by Alyssa Brennan, CSP, Alastair Elliott, PE, Enrica Oliva, Dan Shannon, AIA and Claire Weisz, FAIA

Learning Objectives:

  1. List and describe the building features that can impact the success of office-to-apartment conversion.
  2. Explain how the dimensions and characteristics of 1633 Broadway's floor plate, ceiling height, enclosure, structural bays, and construction type, limit or contribute to the building's potential for residential redevelopment.
  3. Discuss how the building's characteristic features could be applied to create amenities desirable for modern market-rate apartment living.
  4. Assess how the building's surrounding community enhances or impedes its suitability for residential conversion.


AAA 1 Structured Learning Hour
This course can be self-reported to the AANB, as per their CE Guidelines
AAPEI 1 Structured Learning Hour
MAA 1 Structured Learning Hour
This course can be self-reported to the NLAA.
This course can be self-reported to the NSAA
NWTAA 1 Structured Learning Hour
OAA 1 Learning Hour
This course can be self-reported to the AIBC, as per their CE Guidelines.
As an IACET Accredited Provider, BNP Media offers IACET CEUs for its learning events that comply with the ANSI/IACET Continuing Education and Training Standard.
This course is approved as a Structured Course
This course can be self-reported to the AANB, as per their CE Guidelines
Approved for structured learning
Approved for Core Learning
This course can be self-reported to the NLAA
Course may qualify for Learning Hours with NWTAA
Course eligible for OAA Learning Hours
This course can be self-reported for Learning Units to the Architectural Institute of British Columbia
This test is no longer available for credit

The Metals in Construction magazine 2023 Design Competition generated ideas for the innovative redevelopment of 1633 Broadway, a 48-story skyscraper in Midtown Manhattan, into office-to-apartment conversions. This course features members of the competition jury explaining the relationship of floor plate characteristics, ceiling height, structural frame, building enclosure, and other building features to the success of such conversions. Using this information they go on to evaluate the submissions and select the grand prize winner.


Photo courtesy of The Steel Institute of New York


Alyssa Brennan, CSP, is a Senior Vice President of Residential Leasing & Marketing at Rockrose Development.


Alastair Elliott, PE, joined Silman in 1995, was named an Associate with the firm in 2003, and became a Principal and Chief Operating Officer in 2014. He is now Silman’s Director of Operations. Alastair’s experience ranges from the new Whitney Museum of American Art on Gansevoort Street to the renovation and expansion of Friends Seminary School. He is active in industry organizations including the Design Trust for Public Space and is a past President of the Structural Engineers Association of New York (SEAoNY). Alastair has been a lecturer at the Yale School of Architecture since 2017.


Enrica Oliva, M.Sc. Struct. Eng., is Partner and COO at Werner Sobek New York Corp. and director of the firm’s Structures Group. Her experience in the construction industry includes 9 years of design and project management at Thornton Tomasetti, Inc., in New York, as well as the subsequent role of Director of Structures at Werner Sobek New York, taken on in 2016. Amongst many other projects, she has been involved in the Design of the Barclays Center Arena (2007-11) and has been Project Manager of the 146 E 126th Street Tower in Harlem, NY by BIG Architects (2013-15), a 12-story concrete and steel residential tower partially built over an existing commercial 3-story building. At Werner Sobek New York, Enrica is currently managing a luxury residential project in Chelsea, New York, specialty structures projects on the West Coast, as well as prestigious Academic projects in the New York City, Chicago, and Boston areas.


Dan Shannon, AIA, an internationally-recognized leader in commercial design for new and redeveloped buildings and managing partner at MdeAS. With nearly four decades of experience, he provides creative, innovative architectural solutions; making him instrumental in the firm’s overall approach to design. His clear commitment to the philosophy of modernism and urbanism enlivens a building’s presence with integrity.

Dan’s effective leadership and design transcends the firm with a reputation for meeting the client’s goals by working closely with them through the design process. Setting a high-standard for craft within architecture, Dan’s eye for detail is reflected in every project he manages. He has worked alongside international developers to oversee the construction of more than 50 million square feet, including the renovation of the GM Building, winner of a 2007 MASterworks Award. “The Cubes,” at 120 West 42nd Street won the AIA’s Award of Excellence of Commercial Large Projects and received the Outstanding Project Award from the GNYCUC. And most recently, 645 Fifth Avenue, Olympic Tower, received Natural Stone Institute’s Pinnacle Award as well as DrivenxDesign’s Gold Award.


Claire Weisz, FAIA, is a founding partner of WXY, a firm known for community centered approach to architecture, urban design and planning. WXY named New York State Firm of the Year in 2016. Claire was a co-founder and executive director of The Design Trust for Public Space. She is a Fellow of the AIA, has served on the NYSCA Architecture Design Panel and on design juries both nationally and internationally. Lecturing and teaching widely, most recently as the 2017 Portman Visiting Critic at the Georgia Tech School of Architecture. Weisz was named one of Fast Company’s Most Creative People in Business in 2017, and was most recently awarded the Medal of Honor from AIANY in 2018.


The Steel Institute of New York The Steel Institute of New York is a not-for-profit association created to advance the interests of the steel construction industry by helping architects, engineers, developers, and construction managers develop engineering solutions using structural steel construction.


Originally published in March 2023