Foster + Partners is about to break the mold of New York’s static Park Avenue skyline, as they have been announced as winner of the highly publicized competition to replace the aging tower of 425 Park Avenue with a new world-class, sustainable office tower. Lord Foster said: “I have a personal connection with New York, which has been a source of inspiration since my time at Yale, when the new towers on Park Avenue and its neighborhoods were a magnet for every young architect. Seeing first-hand the works of Mies van der Rohe, Gordon Bunshaft, Eero Saarinen and Philip Johnson was tremendously exciting then – I am delighted to have this very special opportunity to design a contemporary tower to stand alongside them. Our aim is to create an exceptional building, both of its time and timeless, as well as being respectful of this context – a tower that is for the City and for the people that will work in it, setting a new standard for office design and providing an enduring landmark that befits its world-famous location.” Continue after the break to learn more about Foster’s winning proposal and to review the existing condition of 425 Park Ave.
Renzo Piano, Jean Nouvel, Zaha Hadid and Richard Meier are just a few of the eleven distinguished architects that L&L Holding Company and Lehman Brothers Holdings Inc. (LBHI) invited to compete for the redevelopment of the 65 year-old tower, however Foster + Partners finished on top. The state-of-the-art proposal responds to the changing needs of a modern office space. It’s tapered steel-frame is shaped by the existing scale and datum of the Avenue, as it rises to meet three shear walls that will illuminate the skyline. The facade seamlessly integrates with the innovative internal arrangement offering three gradated tiers of column-free floors, creating large, open and flexible office space. Each of the three tiers – low, medium and high-rise – is defined by a landscaped terrace that provides an excellent amenity for tenants and offers panoramic views across Manhattan and Central Park. At the street level, the conceptual design for 425 Park Avenue gives as much to the City as to the people that will work in it with the potential for a large civic plaza marked by significant works of art. The conceptual design will serve as the framework for a two-year collaborative process with L&L Holding’s project team to create a fully formed architectural and construction plan for the 425 Park Avenue tower. L&L Holding anticipates the start of construction in 2015 with the new 425 Park Avenue tower to be completed by the end of 2017.