LIM College - The Townhouse in New York

Photo of LIM College - The Townhouse in New York, New York
Photograph courtesy of Susan Grant Lewin Associates
Photo of LIM College - The Townhouse in New York, New York
Photograph courtesy of Susan Grant Lewin Associates
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Photo of LIM College - The Townhouse in New York, New York
Photograph courtesy of Susan Grant Lewin Associates
Photo of LIM College - The Townhouse in New York, New York
Photograph courtesy of Susan Grant Lewin Associates
Photo of LIM College - The Townhouse in New York, New York
Photograph courtesy of Susan Grant Lewin Associates
Photo of LIM College - The Townhouse in New York, New York
Photograph courtesy of Susan Grant Lewin Associates
Photo of LIM College - The Townhouse in New York, New York
Photograph courtesy of Susan Grant Lewin Associates
Photo of LIM College - The Townhouse in New York, New York
Photograph courtesy of Susan Grant Lewin Associates
Photo of LIM College - The Townhouse in New York, New York
Photograph courtesy of Susan Grant Lewin Associates
Photo of LIM College - The Townhouse in New York, New York
Photograph courtesy of Susan Grant Lewin Associates
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LIM College - The Townhouse
Official name:LIM, The College for the Business of Fashion Townhouse

12 East 53rd Street, New York, New York, Midtown 10022
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Text by LIM

Established in 1939, LIM, The College for the Business of Fashion is the only institution in the United States committed to providing specialized education focused on the business side of fashion. Award winning architecture firm Butler Rogers Baskett (BRB) has created a new, state of the art facility for the school, in the heart of midtown Manhattan, just steps away from Fifth Avenue. The gut renovation of this 1880, 6-story townhouse-school at 12 East 53rd Street creates an important presence for the College in the heart of some of the city’s most fashionable retailing.

After many years of accommodating change in an ad hoc manner, the townhouse was in need of updating. What was originally built as a private residence with a gracious interior incorporating high-ceiling spaces was, over time, divided into smaller rooms devoted to classrooms and offices, all with suspended acoustical ceilings, poor lighting, and little natural daylight, giving it a claustrophobic, inward-focused feeling. BRB’s goal was to perceptually increase the sizes of spaces, investing meaning and levels of importance to key areas throughout the building.

Program areas included fashion studios, classrooms, computer labs, student and faculty lounges, and offices for administration and for student and academic affairs. The challenge for BRB was to create a “hip”, creative environment on a modest budget that would remedy the architectural changes made throughout the school’s 30-year evolution in this location.

Quick Facts
Timeline
  • 2009: This historic residence is gutted and the interior completely redone by Butler Rogers Baskett to accommodate LIM.
Did You Know?
  • This building was originally a single family home.
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