What if your house has a few walls?
That’s exactly what the folks at Kew and Sons are thinking about when they open their new brick and mortar shop in Midtown on Monday.
With its “pig-free” materials and high-tech interior design, the shop promises to be a home that looks like your grandmother’s house, complete with flooring made of a blend of polyethylenes.
But, for Kew, polyethylens and its associated products are just the beginning.
“I’m really trying to bring a different style to brick-and-mortar,” said Joe Kew.
“This is not a traditional brick-n-mort, it’s a brick-on-brick kind of business.
You have to make something that’s more sustainable, you have to build it on a smaller footprint.”
Kew and sons is partnering with New York-based architecture firm Sotheby’s to build its new brick-to-wood office space, complete on the site of a former office building.
While the space is expected to open in mid-2017, Kew said it will be the first in the city to open with the building in place.
The Kew family is not the only one building from scratch in Mid-town.
Earlier this month, a few of New York’s most prominent real estate agents, including the folks behind the famed RealtyTrac real estate brokerage, opened a new office space in the West Village.
The idea behind building out a brick and mortise is that it makes it easier for people to get to where they need to be, Kelley Kew told The Associated Press.
That’s because, while a traditional building might have a main entrance that leads to a main hallway, a brick building has a main door that leads directly to the ground floor, where you can enter the basement, he said.
The brick can also accommodate more rooms.
The brick-built Kew building will be similar to what he and his family have built before, Kews said.
It will be constructed on a foundation that includes wood beams and will include a large central area.
“I want to build that with the most natural materials, and the most sustainable materials,” he said, referring to the polyethylenic materials.
Building out the Kew-owned office space has been an ongoing process.
The company has been working on the space since late 2017, when it bought a 7,000-square-foot building in MidTown for $1.3 million.
“It’s been a long process of working with different groups of different architects and building companies,” said Kew’s wife, Kimberly, who has been involved in the company’s various efforts over the years.
The company also built a home for its son, Joe, for $3.2 million in mid 2018, and plans to do the same for Kimberly in 2019.
The family has been building out an office space for about three years, said Keegan Kew of the Kesons.
Kew said that he was inspired to start building out his new home after seeing how many different materials can be used to make a building.
He said he had some ideas about building with polyethyleners, but decided to make the most of the natural materials.
“We just wanted to build something that looked like it could last,” he told The AP.
“There’s something about natural materials that you just can’t find in brick.”
The Kesners have been working with a group of local architects to design the building, but have not decided on a contractor yet.
While they have received some positive feedback, Kesey Kew is skeptical about the quality of the materials they are using.
“You can’t trust the construction company,” he says.
“They should come and inspect it.”
In addition to building the brick-based building, Keshay Kew has been actively involved in working with other local architects and companies to help make the building more sustainable.
He’s even put together a sustainability board for his company, which he hopes will help shape the future of the building.
Keshay and Kimberly Kew say they are not taking any shortcuts in terms of building out their new space.
“The plan is for us to keep going,” Keshays wife, who was also involved in building out the house for Joe, said.
“We’re going to build on a footprint.
We’re going a brick on a brick.”