6 Teams Reimagine New York’s MetLife Building

Metals in Construction Magazine and a jury of architects and engineers have announced the winners of the “Reimagine a New York City Icon” competition. The 2016 Design Challenge, which was sponsored by Metals in Construction magazine and the Ornamental Metal Institute of New York, called for submissions from architects, engineers, students, and designers from around the globe to reimagine the cladding of 200 Park Avenue (formerly the Pan Am Building, now the MetLife Building), with a “resource-conserving, eco-friendly enclosure” that simultaneously creates transparency and preserves the building’s original aesthetic.

The competition was inspired by the President’s Climate Action Plan and the Architecture 2030 Challenge. “The competition was conceived to explore ways of retrofitting existing facades for high performance when preservation and innovation are competing priorities,” said Gary Higbee, AIA, director of industry development for the Ornamental Metal Institute of New York and editor of Metals in Construction magazine. “Recladding a building can give it a new visual identity and radically improve its energy performance in the process. But how do you address this with recognized landmarks? The answers we received in the form of submissions were full of innovative concepts but also underscored how crucial it is for architects and engineers to work together to find successful solutions.”

The jury was comprised of some of the best known experts in sustainable design including Ben Tranel, AIA, LEED, of Gensler; Areta Pawlynsky​, AIA, of Heintges; Billie Faircloth​, AIA, LEED AP BD+C, of Kieran Timberlake; Fiona Cousins​, PE, LEED AP BD+C, of Arup; Sameer Kumar​, AIA, LEED AP, of SHoP; and HaukeJungjohann ​of Thornton Tomasetti. The jury selected six finalists who shared a prize of $15,000.

Read more about all six finalists below.


Courtesy of VOA Architecture

TEAM: VOA Architecture, PLLC
Caroline Karlsen
Brian McFarland, Principal
Jacob Ross
Mavis Tang

Werner Sobek New York Corp​.
Laurence De Bary
Viola Kosseda
Valeria Postorino
Silvia Prandelli, COO

The PanAm Under Glass proposal displays a new high performance façade. It creates a double envelope around the building. The exterior skin acts as a rain screen and activates the natural ventilation, while the inner skin regulates the internal climate of the building. This design also includes operable windows.

Courtesy of VOA Architecture
Courtesy of VOA Architecture


Courtesy of Gabrielle Brainard

Gabrielle Brainard, AIA, SHoP Architects
Benjamin Martinson, Heintges
Berardo Matalucci, CASE‐RPI
Brandon Andow, PhD, CASE‐RPI
Mohamed Aly Etman, CASE‐RPI
Naomi Keena, CASE‐RPI

Compared to the existing MetLife Building, this proposal reduces the amount of energy used by 54%, reduces carbon by 56%, and reduces the overall negative impact on the environment by 42% over the next fifty years. Due to the fact that concrete is one of the least recyclable materials, the existing façade will remain, but a high-performance overcladding will be added. This new curtain wall integrates transparent photovoltaics and an LCD system into the glazing. All of these features combined will reduce glare by 91%.

Courtesy of Gabrielle Brainard


Courtesy of StudioTJOA

Audrey Worden
Alexander Worden

The Thermalswitch façade combines overcladding and double skin techniques to create a unitized frame that fits right over the existing concrete façade. The cavity within the skin is slightly vented and tilts either towards or away from the sun depending on the temperature. This tilting mechanism creates a convection current that pulls fresh air from the outside and warms it as it enters the building, or vents out hot air by drawing cool air from the building core.

Courtesy of StudioTJOA
Courtesy of StudioTJOA


Courtesy of FXFOWLE Architects

Michael Buesing
Jim Bushong
Elizabeth Himmel
Ilana Judah
Patrick Koch
Brandon Massey
Mario Menendez
Gustavo Rodriguez
Austin Sakong
Melanie Silver
David Wallance

THORNTON TOMASETTI ​(Façade and Energy Modeling Consultant)
Vamshe Gooje
Jais Kwon
Silverio Patrizi
Nicole Peterson
Tiffany Broyles Yost

DAGHER ENGINEERING​ (Mechanical Engineering)
Elias Dagher
Ritwik Kakati
Josephine Zurica

This redesign of the façade focuses on reconnecting the building with Park Avenue and introducing sustainable features wherever possible. The design creates a double skin that will maximize the building envelope’s performance. Some of the features include a solar backbone and greenbelts, which allow the building to “breathe” and reduce the cooling load, sky parks and gardens, and solar hot water collectors at spandrels that will drive an absorption chiller.

Courtesy of FXFOWLE Architects
Courtesy of FXFOWLE Architects


Courtesy of AECOM and Volley Studio

Jason Vollen- Architecture
Rob Rothblatt- Architecture
Ross Wimer- Architecture
Xiaofei Shen- Architecture
John Dillon- Architecture
Antoine AbiDargham- Structural
Mostafa Elmorsi- Structural
Pat Hauserman- Construction
James H. Ward III- Construction
Alastair Macgregor- Energy Simulation
Maria Spastri- Energy Simulation
Bryant Stanton- Architecture
Kate Speidel- Architecture
Tom Scerbo- Architecture & Engineering
Geoff Lynch- Architecture

Rendering Team: Volley Studio
Derek Chan
Mike Klausmeier

This design allows for the new façade to react differently during all seasons of the year. Unlike many of the other schemes, this plans on demolishing the old façade to create a new façade that features a large Michell Truss. The new high performance façade will greatly improve passive solar heating and act as an actively vented façade cavity with phytoremediation pre-treat for air handling unit.

Courtesy of AECOM and Volley Studio
Courtesy of AECOM and Volley Studio


Courtesy of Lemay

Architecture, Urban Design and Architectural Branding

Michel Lauzon, senior partner, chief creative officer – Lemay + studio lead, LemayLAB
Simon Pelletier, architectural designer – LemayLAB
Nicolas Labrie, architectural designer – LemayLAB
Alexandre Lapierre, architectural designer – LemayLAB
Karen Piché, urban designer – LemayLAB
Alexis Légaré, architectural designer – LemayLAB
Anthony Bouchard, urban designer – LemayLAB
Marie‐Élaine Globensky, brand strategist – Lemay
Kevin Wang, senior graphic designer – Lemay

Real Migneault, associate, subject matter expert & sustainability – Lemay
Nancy Dubeau, urban designer, sustainability concept render – Lemay
Eloi Mayano, project assistant, research and data treatment – Lemay
Energy, Performance & Simulations

Energy, Performance & Simulations
André Rochette, CEO – Ecosystem
Maxime Jeffrey‐Gauthier, engineering, analyst – Ecosystem
Simon Sawada, energy and daylight analyst – Sefaira
Scott Stelzer, account manager – Sefaira

Supporting Cast
Louis Lemay, CEO and excellence facilitator – Lemay
Andres Escobar – senior partner, design principal – Escobar Design by Lemay
Andrew King – senior partner, design principal – Lemay

The Farm Follows Fiction design imagines turning the building into a vertical farm. Through solar collection and rainwater harvesting, these vertical gardens will provide produce and allow ideal amounts of daylight to enter through the glass façade. The goal is to make this building become the ultimate eco machine. 

Courtesy of Lemay
Courtesy of Lemay

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About this author
Cite: Kaley Overstreet. "6 Teams Reimagine New York’s MetLife Building" 07 Mar 2016. ArchDaily. Accessed . <https://www.archdaily.com/782993/6-teams-reimagine-new-yorks-metlife-building> ISSN 0719-8884

Courtesy of Gabrielle Brainard

6 家美国大公司用最先进的可持续发展技术设计的纽约大都会人寿大厦

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