Windtech Consultants provided their wind engineering expertise to two residential towers located at Hallets Point in Queens, New York. The Harlem River is situated to the immediate north and west of the two buildings which also share a podium. Windtech worked alongside The Durst Organization, Dattner Architects and the façade engineers, Vidaris to carry out initial desktop pedestrian wind environment assessment to provide early design input. More detailed wind tunnel studies were then carried out to optimize the cladding design for wind pressures and a pedestrian wind environment comfort.
Results from the pedestrian wind environment comfort study indicated wind conditions for the local surrounding area were expected to remain similar to the existing conditions. However to achieve more favorable wind conditions in the trafficable outdoor areas for the intended use, Windtech worked with the architect to develop a strategic mitigation strategy which included awnings, densely foliating trees and other measures to enhance these wind conditions.
The façade cladding pressure study was undertaken to determine and optimize the 50 year return period design wind pressures acting on the cladding of the development when compared to purely code based estimates. Testing was performed using one of Windtech’s three boundary layer wind tunnels, which each have a 10ft wide working section and has a fetch length of 46ft. Due to several other developments being proposed nearby, testing for this project was performed with the effect of only the existing surrounding buildings and with the addition of the proposed nearby developments. This ensured that a worse-case scenario was considered for the future wind conditions the development will encounter.