Gramercy Park Remodel

Jorge Mastropietro, founder and principal of JMA in New York, works against the clock to make a Gramercy Park apartment look and feel larger.

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How long will the project take? It's a common question remodelers often get from clients, so it’s not unusual for a contractor to work against the clock. But the biological clock? That’s another story.

However, even human nature sometimes can dictate a project timeline. Just ask Jorge Mastropietro. Recently, the principal of JMA Architects in New York was hired to design and remodel the kitchen and powder room of a small apartment in the Gramercy Park neighborhood of Manhattan. With one stipulation: It had to be completed before the owner gave birth.

It was a tall order, but not one Mastropietro couldn’t handle. After consulting with the owners, he and his team devised a plan to transform the second story, 2-bedroom, 1.5-bath unit from a dark and cramped space to an open and airy one fit for a growing family. The new layout was based on how the clients used their kitchen, the kind of storage they needed, and the connection they wanted to the other living areas.

In addition to moving walls to eliminate the corridor feel, JMA replaced the existing dark color scheme with a white color palette to enhance the brightness, and also added soffit lighting throughout the kitchen and dining areas for a daylight effect at night. Touches of bamboo are found in the bathroom and kitchen for warmth.

In all, the project took 3 months to complete, and the team finished just in the nick of time--the baby was born a week early. Coincidentally, JMA finished the day before.

Learn more about the project and view the end results in the slideshow above.