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Opened in April 2019, Diller Scofidio + Renfro’s (DS+R) and Rockwell Group’s The Shed is an eight-level, 200,000-square-foot art center located on the southern, 30th Street flank of Hudson Yards. The project has received acclaim for its operable features, notably its gliding ETFE-clad shell and multi-ton doors.

  • Facade
    Manufacturer

    Cimolai S.p.A
    BGT Bischoff Glastechnik AG
    Bator Industries
  • Architect
    Diller Scofidio + Renfro (Lead Architect)
    Rockwell Group (Collaborating Architect)
  • Main Contractor
    Sciame
  • Facade
    Installer

    Cimolai S.p.A
    Cimolai Technology
    CS Facades
  • Facade
    Consultant

    Thornton Tomasetti
  • Location
    New York
  • Date of
    Completion

    April 2019
  • System
    Kinetic lifting system
  • Products
    Custom steel frame and aluminum glass panels

The large operable doors, dubbed “guillotine doors,” are located on the north and east elevations of the structure. When lifted, they allow the central performance space, or the McCourt, to effectively function as an open-air pavilion.

The structural steel for the doors was fabricated with predrilled mounting for the glass facade and was assembled on site with kinetic components that facilitate proper guidance and alignment. Coordinating with kinetics contractors and fabricators proved a challenging aspect of the project. “Typically, kinetics contractors are quite independent of other construction elements,” said Charles Berman, associate principal of DS+R. “We had the opportunity to work with these trades in early engagement, design-build processes which ultimately led to the best path to success.”

Along the north elevation, the door measures 25 feet wide and 32 feet tall, while along the east it is 33 feet wide and 32 feet tall. Each door weighs approximately 30 tons and is lifted by a pair of electric drum winches that pull braided stainless steel wired cables through a series of roller bearings. The system is also integrated with brakes and lockout assemblies to allow for variegated opening heights. In total, raising the doors to their maximum height of 32 feet takes nearly two and a half minutes.

The Shed adjoins DS+R and the Rockwell Groups adjacent 15 Hudson Yards along a seam of polished steelwork. Many of the mechanical components of the performance space are embedded within the podium of the tower, ventilated by parametrically designed glass-and-louver modules.

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