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Kane Chan, who moved to New York from London in 2009, suffered through his previous apartment’s makeover. “One would have thought I’d learned a lesson then, but despite all the dust and frustration one has to go through, the end result was enough for me to want to do it all over again,” he says. And so Kane engaged in the process of renovating a forlorn one-bedroom apartment with narrow rooms into what’s now his radiant modern loft. Only his photos can speak to the level of transformation.

Photo: Peter Marginelli

Kane’s requisites were to find a prewar apartment, a loft, or a brownstone, and after seeing 50-plus properties, this space gave him hope. The 1929 building in the East Village was converted to co-ops in the seventies. The loft area was unusable, as it housed an AC with a false ceiling and wall.

After a gut renovation by designer Sergio Mercado, the full beauty of the airy, 520-square-foot apartment emerged. Kane now uses the loft space as his bedroom. The closets on the right, under the stair, feature marine-grade plywood with a metallic-gray stain. The stairs are framed in blackened steel with reclaimed Douglas-fir treads.

Photo: Peter Marginelli/Courtesy of Kane Chan

“When I first saw it, I fell in love with the windows and the quality of the morning light,” Kane says. “The entire renovation took nine months, and I lived in it for the last four months. It was quite a journey.”

“The space was bisected by the bedroom wall,” Mercado says. Once that came down, the full beauty and light from the windows was revealed.

Photo: Peter Marginelli/Courtesy of Kane Chan

The view of the loft toward the stairs reveals hidden touches of color in the storage areas. The photograph of the swimmer is by Kane, who shot it in Belize with a $100 medium-format camera when he was there with Operation Raleigh (the U.K.’s version of the Peace Corps). The baby fig tree is from the Chelsea market. “Fig trees are common in Singapore, where I grew up, and they remind me of my childhood,” Kane says.

Photo: Peter Marginelli

The opposite view shows the dining area with a Saarinen table purchased at Conran’s in London with vintage Paul McCobb chairs. The console is from Ikea. The sofa is from B&B Italia, and the standing lamp is from Flos—Kane bought at Purves & Purves in London. “I couldn’t bear to part with it, so I had it shipped over and rewired,” Kayne says.

Photo: Peter Marginelli

The mezzanine sleeping loft is only 227 square feet, but it is elegant and efficient, with storage area for books in the oak shelf.

Photo: Peter Marginelli

The new bathroom includes a sink carved from one piece of black granite with a three-by-eight-foot sheet of steel, bent to create a backsplash and shelf. The faucet is by Rhol.

Photo: Peter Marginelli

The streamlined kitchen recedes into the landscape with two-inch-thick repurposed black granite countertops found at B.I.G. in Brooklyn. The wall panels are Ikea, and the appliances are Miele. The wood shelves are stained with metallic-gray stain.

Photo: Peter Marginelli

Carl Henry Nacht (left) West Side Highway and 38th Street. After dinner on June 22, 2006, Nacht, a doctor who often cycled to make house calls to his elderly patients, was hit by an NYPD tow truck crossing the Hudson River Park bikeway.

Shamar Porter Linden Boulevard near Williams Avenue, East New York. On August 5, 2006, Porter’s Little League team won its playoff game. He was struck by a minivan after leaving the field.

Reginald Chan (left) Third Avenue and 17th Street. On September 15, 2006, Chan was hit by a flatbed tow truck while making a delivery of Chinese food.

Brandie Bailey Houston and Essex Streets. On May 8, 2005, Bailey was struck by a private sanitation truck while on her way home to Williamsburg after waitressing at the West Village restaurant Red Bamboo. Bailey was a regular at CBGB, where a memorial was held in her honor.

Craig Murphey (left) Ten Eyck Street and Union Avenue, Williamsburg. Early in the morning of October 18, 2007, Murphey was biking home from escorting his date to her South Williamsburg apartment. According to police reports, Murphey attempted to outrun a gas truck turning left on Ten Eyck Street. His pelvis shattered on impact, and he was pronounced dead at the scene. In his honor, over 40 friends have since received tattoos that read BE BETTER.

Frank C. Simpson Linden Boulevard near 175th Street, St. Albans. Simpson, a janitor returning from the evening shift at a Con Edison facility, was hit by a Dodge Stratus on November 9, 2006.

Jose Mora (left) North Conduit and McKinley Avenues, Cypress Hills. On September 4, 2006, 11-year-old Mora was on his way to the barber for a back-to-school haircut; that week, he was to start the sixth grade at nearby Junior High School 302. He was struck by a Honda while walking his bike across an intersection.

Jonathan Neese South 4th Street and Roebling Street, Williamsburg. On August 12, 2006, Neese, a bike messenger known as “Bronx Jon,” was struck by a livery cab while cycling from Brooklyn to Manhattan.

Sam Khaled Hindy (left) Base of the Manhattan Bridge. On November 16, 2007, Hindy was run over after mistakenly entering a Manhattan Bridge lane reserved for cars.

Habian Rodriguez Main Street and Horace Harding Expressway, Flushing. On September 1, 2007, Rodriguez collided with a city bus and died 30 minutes later.

Elizabeth Padilla (left) Fifth Avenue and Prospect Place, Park Slope. Commuting to the Brooklyn Bar Association on June 9, 2005, Padilla swerved to avoid the open door of a parked P.C. Richard’s truck. She lost control of her bike and fell underneath the wheels of an ice-cream delivery truck.

Juan Luis Solis East Gun Hill Road and Bouck Avenue, the Bronx. Attempting to pass a double-parked car on June 22, 2007, Solis was struck by a box truck and died of severe head trauma. The truck did not stop.

Jeffrey Moore (left) Chauncey Street and Rockaway Avenue, Bed-Stuy. According to witnesses, on May 29, 2007, Moore was run over (twice) by his girlfriend Jeanine Harrington. She was indicted on charges of murder and criminal possession of a weapon (her Nissan Pathfinder).

Derek Lake Houston Street and La Guardia Place. On June 26, 2006, Lake reportedly skidded on a steel construction plate and was crushed underneath the wheels of a passing truck.

Elijah Armand Wrancher (left) Springfield Boulevard and 130th Avenue, Springfield Gardens. On August 28, 2007, 12-year-old Wrancher attempted to ride his bicycle while holding onto a moving truck. He lost his grip and fell under the truck’s rear wheel.

David Smith Sixth Avenue and 36th Street. On December 5, 2007, Smith was biking up Sixth Avenue when the passenger-side door of a parked pickup truck opened unexpectedly. He was knocked into the path of an oncoming truck.

Anthony Delgado (left) Palmetto Street and Central Avenue, Bushwick. Shortly after midnight on April 29, 2007, 13-year-old Delgado borrowed a bike to head home from his friend’s baptism party. As he crossed the intersection, he was struck by an SUV.

Carolina Hernandez 57th Avenue and Junction Boulevard, Elmhurst. On August 16, 2007, Hernandez was riding to a mall when she was struck and killed by a Chevy truck. The driver pled guilty to driving with a suspended license.

Anthony Delgado (left) Palmetto Street and Central Avenue, Bushwick. Shortly after midnight on April 29, 2007, 13-year-old Delgado borrowed a bike to head home from his friend’s baptism party. As he crossed the intersection, he was struck by an SUV.

Carolina Hernandez 57th Avenue and Junction Boulevard, Elmhurst. On August 16, 2007, Hernandez was riding to a mall when she was struck and killed by a Chevy truck. The driver pled guilty to driving with a suspended license.

Anthony Delgado (left) Palmetto Street and Central Avenue, Bushwick. Shortly after midnight on April 29, 2007, 13-year-old Delgado borrowed a bike to head home from his friend’s baptism party. As he crossed the intersection, he was struck by an SUV.

Carolina Hernandez 57th Avenue and Junction Boulevard, Elmhurst. On August 16, 2007, Hernandez was riding to a mall when she was struck and killed by a Chevy truck. The driver pled guilty to driving with a suspended license.

Anthony Delgado (left) Palmetto Street and Central Avenue, Bushwick. Shortly after midnight on April 29, 2007, 13-year-old Delgado borrowed a bike to head home from his friend’s baptism party. As he crossed the intersection, he was struck by an SUV.

Carolina Hernandez 57th Avenue and Junction Boulevard, Elmhurst. On August 16, 2007, Hernandez was riding to a mall when she was struck and killed by a Chevy truck. The driver pled guilty to driving with a suspended license.

Fall Fashion Features

The Beefcake in the Backcourt
Big, fake, and fully able to outshine its surroundings.Big, fake, and fully able to outshine its surroundings.

 

The Beefcake in the Backcourt
Big, fake, and fully able to outshine its surroundings.Big, fake, and fully able to outshine its surroundings.
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