BILCO Basement Doors

Publication Date
November 12, 2020

The best part of a home is its Bilco door. What better way to join inside and outside! You can have your front doors and foyers, double vestibules, glorious lobbies with reveal bases. Not here! No dressing up this liminal zone. Just get to the point! Make your basement more useful, it says. Make yourself more useful. Make your basement less basement. Make the world a basement. A little bit awkward? A little bit dangerous? Of Course! This is utility at its greatest, breaking all the rules. No rise over run. No sidewalk clearance. Fuck the sidewalk! I’ve got work to do! A Bilco door is a shortcut, a warp speed secret passage mindmeld between us and them. The secreter the better. Be mindful in your Bilco Doorway. Enjoy that unruly perspective. Head at sidewalk level. That letting go before you drop in or pop out. That moment before the… oh god! What to wear when passing through your Bilco? Something everyday but a little on the tough side. Something extremely normal. Denim! No apartment building is complete without its Bilco roof hatch. Welcome to heaven! Be very afraid as you tiptoe balance on that ladder wondering if you shouldn’t have. How do your legs and arms go again? Not a problem with Pre-punched cap flashing to receive the Bil-Guard 2.0 Hatch Safety Railing System. Have you earned this gateway to the sky? Did you bring a metal stick? A ladder perhaps? Carrying a ladder up a ladder is possibly the most important experience in a young person’s life. In the ladder’s life! A Bilco door is utility’s utility. Got a cooler? Some Bulky Articles? Put that utility to use with a Bilco door. Hey cheerios, peanut butter sandwich, need something more risky? Let’s go get it. Be somebody. Get to it. So practical it’s scary. Young father’s nightmare. Watch your kid meander down the patchwork sidewalk. That clanging reminder that in New York City the ground isn’t real. Everything is hollow. Even better in the rain. Glossy wet diamond plate Bilco door. That rusty hole transparency. Made in New Haven but so New York. Like pizza, hamburgers, frisbee. Bilco with a small b. The genericized form. Built to disappear in a world made of holes. Dangerously Normal. That slippery nudge at the edge of consciousness. Quietly, behind that wall over there by the fountain. Look! Mill finish aluminum in any color to match existing as required. Shhhh, I see you. I admire your neat, trim appearance and rugged construction. Too cool for school. Too safe for signage. Hang on with your free hand while taking advantage of one-hand-only operation. Watch carefully for the Bilco door that also goes up the wall. Like a patch of sunlight in the corner of the room. Total disregard for planar continuity. What could be more modern? Bold disregard for anything less than essential. Simple modern timeless disregard. Urban tracheotomy. Let’s enjoy the usefulness, convenience and safety that only direct access can provide. Long-lasting. Watertight. Ease of Operation makes a Bilco Door so convenient, so easy to avoid tracking through first floor rooms. Avoid the first floor all together. Who needs it? Life would be so easy and convenient in the basement alone with a folding chair, a cooler, and a ladder and some jeans. Folding ping-pong table. Fold it all up! Avoid Everything! Tension rods provide effortless opening and closing of the heavy gauge steel doors. Ready to be useful. Springing to service out of nowhere and then gone in a flash, folded back up. Positive slam latch with interior and exterior padlock hasps. So Modern!

Publication Date
November 12, 2020
Graphic Designers
Web Editors


In Time

Conrad Tao
753 words
Kyle Winston
708 words