It happened in the middle of the night: the stealth whitewashing of 5Pointz, Long Island City's unofficial graffiti museum. In 2013 owner Jerry Wolkoff, of G&M Realty, wanted the building razed in order to erect new luxury condominiums, and the artists sued to preserve their work. A judge denied the artists' request and Wolkoff had the murals destroyed under cover of darkness, ostensibly to prevent them from attaining landmark status. Though graffiti was born as a subversive act, these artists had painted with Wolkoff's permission since 1993 and had turned the warehouse into “the world's premiere graffiti mecca” and the largest legal aerosol art space in the United States. This was a serious betrayal.
The New York City Public Design Commission and Mayor Bill de Blasio have announced the 11 projects selected as winners of their 2017 Awards for Excellence in Design. Established in 1983, the award has been bestowed annually to projects from the city’s five boroughs that “exemplify how innovative and thoughtful design can provide New Yorkers with the best possible public spaces and services and engender a sense of civic pride.”
Both built and unbuilt projects are considered for the award. Previous winners have included BIG + Starr Whitehouse’s 40th Police Precinct (2016), Studio Gang’s Fire Rescue 2 (2015), the Louis Kahn-designed Four Freedoms Park (2014), and Steven Holl’s Hunters Point Library (2011).
Tod Williams Billie Tsien Architects Break Ground on Jewish Theological Seminary Renovation in New York
New York’s Jewish Theological Seminary has officially broken ground on its “21st Century Campus” renovation and expansion, designed by Obama Presidential Library architects Tod Williams and Billie Tsien.
The full project will comprise a new resident hall, conference facilities, an auditorium/performing arts space, and a state-of-art library containing the world’s largest collection of Judaic and Hebraic books, manuscripts and scrolls. Advanced educational technology will be featured throughout.
With construction on New York's Hudson Yards development racing forward, developers Related Companies and Oxford Properties Group have revealed plans for the latest addition to the complex: a 35,000-square-foot food hall featuring dining by celebrity chef José Andrés located within KPF’s already-open 10 Hudson Yards.
“The greatest thing about being an architect,” pronounced Bjarke Ingels, “is that you build buildings.”
Construction has officially begun on Vessel, the 15-story tall staircase sculpture designed by Heatherwick Studio that will serve as the centerpiece of New York’s massive new Hudson Yards development. To build the structure, 75 individual units are being prefabricated by Cimolai S.p.A. in their Monfalcone, Italy facility, then shipped to New York where they will be assembled on site. These first 10 of these pieces have now completed their 15-day overseas journey, with the remaining pieces scheduled to arrive on-site and put into place over the coming year.
Researchers at the MIT Senseable City Lab have launched a new platform using Google Street View data to measure and compare the green canopies of major cities across the world. Treepedia, created in collaboration with the World Economic Forum, is an interactive website which allows users to view the location and size of their city’s trees, submit information to help tag them, and advocate for more trees in their area. In the development of Treepedia, the Senseable City Lab recognizes the role of green canopies in urban life, and asks how citizens can be more integral to the process of greening their neighborhoods.
Real estate developer Two Trees Management has unveiled new images of the James Corner-designed Domino Park to coincide with the announcement of the park’s opening date, slated for Summer 2018. Located along the East River in the Brooklyn neighborhood of Williamsburg, the park is a central component of the 11-acre Domino Sugar redevelopment site, which will feature several new residential towers and a transformation of the former Domino Sugar factory by the Partnership for Architecture and Urbanism and Beyer Blinder Belle.
Beomki Lee and Chang Kyu Lee of Atelier L have unveiled their speculative project, Instant City: Living Air-Right, which proposes that affordable housing and public programs be built in the air rights of existing buildings in New York City.
As a response to the lack of home ownership in the city, the project aims to provide living space, as well as to foster community in an overlooked space.
Florian W. Mueller's Singularity series is, in the photographer's own words, "just the building – reduced to the max." These deceptively simple shots of the summits of skyscrapers from around Europe and North America, each set against in infinite gradient of sky, are symbols of architecture's effort to reach ever higher in evermore unique ways. For Mueller, who is based in Cologne, they are an attempt at abstraction. In isolation—and especially when viewed together—they are remarkably revealing as studies of form and façade.
As Zaha Hadid’s 520 West 28th approaches completion, photos of the apartment interiors have been revealed for the first time. Shared by developer Related Companies, the images show two of the building’s first completed residences: the massive 4,500-square-foot Unit 20 and the more modest 1,700-square-foot Unit 12. The two units feature the interior built-ins and finishes designed by Hadid alongside interior design schemes envisioned by Jennifer Post and West Chin, respectively.
The Waldorf Astoria New York has released plans for a top to bottom restoration and revitalization of the building’s historically landmarked exterior and interior space, to be carried out by architects Skidmore, Owings & Merrill (SOM) and interior designer Pierre-Yves Rochon (PYR). If approved by the New York City Landmarks Preservation Commission, the restoration will be among the most complex and intensive landmark preservation efforts in New York City history.
When Philip Johnson curated the Museum of Modern Arts’ (MoMA) 1932 “International Exhibition of Modern Architecture,” he did so with the explicit intention of defining the International Style. As a guest curator at the same institution in 1988 alongside Mark Wigley (now Dean Emeritus of the Columbia GSAPP), Johnson took the opposite approach: rather than present architecture derived from a rigidly uniform set of design principles, he gathered a collection of work by architects whose similar (but not identical) approaches had yielded similar results. The designers he selected—Peter Eisenman, Frank Gehry, Zaha Hadid, Rem Koolhaas, Daniel Libeskind, Bernard Tschumi, and the firm Coop Himmelblau (led by Wolf Prix)—would prove to be some of the most influential architects of the late 20th Century to the present day.[1,2]
Construction on Heatherwick Studio’s undulating Pier 55 in New York has come to a screeching halt, following a ruling by a United States District Court judge last week that will require the project to undergo an intense wildlife impact review.
Last April, the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers gave the project, located on the Hudson River in West Chelsea, the go-ahead, allowing initial construction to begin. But the district judge found that the Army Corps of Engineers had failed to properly consider the wide effects of the projects on the river wildlife.
Elijah Equities, LLC has unveiled plans for the redevelopment of The Warehouse in New York City, a property currently occupied by car parking and art galleries, which will be transformed into 100,000 square feet of rentable office and retail space designed by Morris Adjmi.
Situated next to the High Line, the building currently at the site is a four-story, 65,000-square-foot former apparel-manufacturing warehouse. The redevelopment will add a three-story, steel-framed, cantilevered addition, resulting in a seven-story building with over 18,000 square feet of rooftop and outdoor amenity space.
Cast & Place has been announced as the winner of the 2017 City of Dreams competition to create a pavilion for New York City’s Governors Island. Held by not-for-profit arts organization FIGMENT, the AIANY Emerging New York Architects Committee, and the Structural Engineers Association of New York, the competition called for a design to be the hub of FIGMENT’s free community arts festival during Summer 2017, based on questions of the future of New York, how design can confront environmental challenges, and how architecture can be built from recycled or borrowed material.
With these questions in mind, Cast & Place was conceptualized as a pavilion made entirely from waste. 300,000 recycled aluminum cans, cast into the cracks of dried clay, will form structural panels that assemble into shaded spaces for performance and play.
A 1,400-foot-tall mixed-use skyscraper by Zaha Hadid Architects may be the next supertall structure to hit midtown Manhattan. Located at 666 Fifth Avenue between 52nd and 53rd Street, the project is the brainchild of Kushner Properties, who currently co-own the existing 483-foot-tall building with Vornado Realty Trust.
Estimated to cost up to $12 billion, the company is currently negotiating a multi-billion dollar deal with Chinese holding company Anbang Insurance Group to finance the project. If plans to buy out the building go through, Kushner would be in the clear to begin construction on the ZHA-designed tower, which would rebrand the property as 660 Fifth Avenue and offer 464,000-square-feet of residential space, an 11-story hotel, and a 9-story retail podium.
In 2014, midtown Manhattan received its first supertall (taller than 1,000 feet) residential building, Christian de Portzamparc’s One57. The following year, Rafael Viñoly Architects’ 432 Park Avenue surpassed the mark, confirming the trend of sky-shattering, pencil-thin skyscrapers rising along Central Park’s southern edge. In all, at least 10 supertall projects have been planned for the neighborhood, earning it the nickname of Billionaire’s Row.
Responding to this phenomenon, architect Ioannis Oikonomou of oiio architecture studio has proposed an alternate solution, called “The Big Bend,” that asks the question: “What if our buildings were long instead of tall?”