In 2005, Gary Barnett, the president of Extell, commissioned Christian de Portzamparc to design several towers on 57th Street. The building’s trademark soaring movement, with its summit turned towards the immense open sky of Central Park, emerged early in the design stage.
Extell was soon presented with a series of different plot acquisition options, however, and after four years of testing design schemes and hundreds of model studies for different site configurations, volumes and heights of up to almost 400 meters in October 2007, the tower finally entered into construction in 2009, just after the start of the first economic crisis. Rather than abandon his plans for the site, Gary Barnet rapidly re-launched them.
In the light of his previous projects, the architect was quickly able to come up with a definitive solution to build the highest residential tower in New York during an economic crisis, on a highly irregular site, as part of a complex including the Park Hyatt Hotel and, on the upper floors, stunning apartments with views over Central Park, with an interior design by Thomas Juul-Hansen, thereby covering every aspect of the project.
The lots finally acquired by the promoter formed an “L” shape. Christian de Portzamparc drew on this complexity to provide the main thrust of his design. The result reflects the structural requirements of a markedly elongated tower, the city’s alignment regulations and the air rights specific to this site. The building’s volumes are linked by an ascending and descending cascading movement that flows over curved transitional surfaces containing inhabited terraces.
A vertical pattern of contrasting stripes comprised of two different glass types (with uniform visibility from the interior) distinguish the north façades and recall the vertical energy of New York’s cascading skyline, in contrast with the east and west façades that resemble the aleatory aesthetic of the Le Monde and Nantes projects, with its Gustave Klimt-like pixilation that fluctuates with the constantly changing light exposure.Location: New York, USA Architect: Atelier Christian de Portzamparc
Program: Hotel and residential.
Client: Extell Development Company.
Executive Architect: SLCE Architect LLP
Residential Interior Design: Thomas Juul-Hansen, LLC
Hotel Interior Design: Yabu Pushelberg
Total Construction Floor Area: 74,353 sq.m.
Height: 1004’5’’ ft / 306 m – 75 floors