Search results for "Rafael Viñoly"

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Penthouse Plans

Rafael Viñoly gears up redesign of office space on Manhattan's Auto Row
Rafael Viñoly Architects will lead the redesign of—and two-floor addition to—an office building at 787 11th Avenue on Manhattan's "Auto Row." Viñoly's $100 million renovation will add 86,000 square feet of office space over two floors to the 10-story building, owned by the Georgetown Company. The additions will bring the structure's size to over half a million square feet. The work space, recessed from the building's original footprint, will have wide open floor plates and oversize windows to flood the space with natural light. Renovations will include a two-story penthouse and a 12,000-square-foot roof deck, accessible only to office tenants. Currently, Jaguar Land Rover, Nissan, and Infiniti have showrooms and offices in the space; post-renovation, BNF Automotive Group and Nissan North America will lease 265,000 square feet for their flagships on the building's lower floors. Viñoly, whose recent New York projects include the Rockefeller University Campus Master Plan and supertall 432 Park Avenue, offered unvarnished praise for the developers in a statement. He added: “The opportunity to combine the building’s historic architecture with a sleek and modern design is one I could not pass up.” The building is one of many new projects outside of Hudson Yards to blossom on Manhattan's Far West Side. A block away from Hudson River Park and the West Side Highway, tenants will have access to a private subway shuttle service, and a CitiBike station across the street. Work is expected to be complete by the end of 2017.
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Helmut Jahn's latest Chicago skyscraper loses 200 feet in height

Dubbed “1000M” for its 1000 South Michigan Avenue address, New York developers Time Equities (who also partnered with Jahn on a New York City tower bearing close resemblance) and JK Equities lopped nearly 200 feet off the plan, bringing the height to 832 feet with 73 stories. It conforms to new height guidelines that govern the south portion of the Historic Michigan Boulevard District, which runs from Randolph Street to 11th Street, and assuages residents’ concerns over the appropriateness of dropping a supertall on an iconic streetwall. The amendment from the Commission on Chicago Landmarks allows for new towers up to 900 feet on Michigan and Wabash Avenues between 8th and 11th Streets.

In the process, a staggered stacked cube concept was scrapped, replaced by sinuous curves and triangular planes. Project text attributes the “hard sloping north edge, the soft and natural southeast corner, and curved east and west faces” to the textures of city, lake, and park, respectively. A decidedly rectangular base transitions to parallelogram from the 24 through 72 floors, allowing the tower’s top-heavy dimensions to develop slowly and gracefully. An enclosed omni-directional top houses mechanicals and a 5,300-square-foot roof terrace. Among Chicago’s tallest towers, Jahn said at the community presentation, this “is the only building to get bigger toward the top." The shift from rectilinear base to more curvaceous top also delineates the change from apartments to condos in the tower. One hundred and forty rental units would fill the base, providing an aesthetic screen for ten floors of parking. An amenity level divides these lower rental units from the 366 condos planned for the upper floors, while external load bearing “super columns” also signal this break on the tower’s facade. Architecture critic Blair Kamin noted in the Chicago Tribune that the historic district’s tallest structure is the 430-foot-tall Metropolitan Tower several blocks north. Immediate Michigan Avenue neighbors are 100- and 272-feet-tall, the shorter of which was acquired by the developers. Clearly, the pose struck by Jahn’s tower will be instrumental to its contextual success or failure. To that end, the tower’s shape is derived largely from its relationship to adjoining buildings. The taller north neighbor’s setback is matched and a 20-foot gap exceeds the 12 feet required by code, preserving greater sunlight and airflow for that building’s south-facing tenants. A sloping 17-foot outcrop hovers over the southern neighbor, in a way cradling it (the outcropping and expansion of floor plates also helps with the economics of a shortened proposal). In material terms, a metal facade system transitions to a greater ratio of glass once the tower clears its neighbors. Community reaction to the new concept has been overwhelmingly positive, but a lingering concern is whether equal care will be given to the less prominent west facade. Relative stature may be diminished, but Jahn’s redesign still sets out to create a visual counterpoint to the wall of skyscrapers rounding Michigan onto Randolph. Together with Rafael Viñoly’s twin 76-story tower designs at Michigan Avenue and Roosevelt Road and Hartshorne Plunkard Architecture’s rendering of a 585-foot-tall apartment building two blocks north of 1000M, a bolder definition of Grant Park’s south rim is on the way. Developers hope to break ground in 12 to 15 months.
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This unit in Vinoly's 432 Park skyscraper goes for baroque with interior design
Love it or not, Rafael Viñoly's 432 Park makes a statement on the New York City skyline. The 88-story, 1,396-foot-tall skyscraper will be home to some of the world's richest people (and/or their faceless LLCs). One soon-to-be-resident is bringing the public's prying eyes inward by bucking the less-is-more aesthetic of contemporary interior design for a maximalist, marble-on-marble pad designed by Brooklyn–based Atelier & Co. Atelier & Co. went for baroque with the design of a 4,000-square-foot residence on the tower's 40th floor. The building's structural tube design allows for open, no-column layouts, allowing residents to configure the space freely from a standard skyscraper layout. Atelier & Co.'s plan removes the sitting room to create a combined dining and living area, divided only by a bookcase lifted from the set of Downton Abbey. Meanwhile, the size of the master bathroom is doubled, presumably to accommodate the owner's collection of marble busts, vases, or anachronistic glass globes. The colonnaded entryways, ornate wood floors, and coffered ceilings do right by Joan Rivers and Louis XIV. Atelier & Co. notes that the design was influenced by 19th century Prussian architect and painter Karl Friedrich Schinkel as well as Leo von Klenze, the German painter, writer, and architect. The designers do recognize that their creation is inside a supertall, not Versaillies. They claim that the aesthetic draws on Viñoly's geometry, perhaps in the patterning of the living room's coffered ceiling. As this monumental throwback interior takes shape, it's a good time to note that the Council on Tall Buildings and Urban Habitat, the organization in charge of keeping tabs on the world's supertalls, recently recognized 432 Park as the world's 100th supertall. The tower clocks in as the second tallest building completed in 2015, per the organization's numbers. While living in this apartment may cause irreparable damage to your taste, that's not the only danger it poses. A recent study in the Canadian Medical Association Journal suggests that living on a building's upper floors increases the risk of dying from cardiac arrest.
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OMA selected to design The Factory, a major arts complex in Manchester, England
After fending off  Rafael Viñoly, Zaha Hadid, Nicholas Grimshaw, Haworth Tompkins Limited and compatriots Mecanoo, OMA's design for "The Factory" will become Manchester's new art house. Lead by Rem Koolhaas, The Factory will be in the British city's center and is touted to cost $166 million with a further $13.5 million-a-year to run. Funding will not be an issue for Koolhaas' building as U.K. Chancellor George Osborne has pledged $117.5 million to the project with the view that The Factory will become the "Northern Powerhouse" showpiece. The project's name supposedly comes from the home-grown Factory Records, an indie record label launched in 1978 that produced notable bands such as Joy Division and Happy Mondays. Koolhaas has designed what essentially is an art-box that will host a wide range of artistic events in Manchester, with an aim for the facility to become the cultural focal point of the region. The venue is dedicated to theatre, music, dance, technology, film, TV, and scientific advancements and will have a combined capacity of 7,200—2,200 seated and 5,000 standing. This will be OMA's first major public development on British soil, aside from a few minor forays into London, Glasgow, and the south coast. “The importance of the Factory cannot be overstated," Manchester council leader, Sir Richard Leese, told the Guardian. "It will be of international significance, the cultural anchor for the next phase of economic and cultural regeneration in Manchester, Greater Manchester and beyond. It will help power Manchester and the wider region towards becoming a genuine cultural and economic counterbalance to London, as well as being a place where inspirational art is created.” Koolhaas' project in Manchester is set to break ground next year with the aim to finish by 2019. According to the Guardian, "Those behind the project have predicted that within a decade it will help create the equivalent of 2,500 jobs adding nearly $211 million to the local economy."
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Pier into the future: Tribeca's Pier 26 to get an OLIN landscape and a Rafael Viñoly–designed science center
Citibank announced on Friday that it will donate $10 million t0 the Hudson River Park Trust (HRPT) for the renovation of Tribeca's Pier 26. For Citi, it's a sweet quid pro quo: the river pier is adjacent to Citi's soon-to-be global headquarters at 388–390 Greenwich Street. Philadelphia-based OLIN will lead the park's design team. Rafael Viñoly will work pro bono to design a research and science education center for the site. Pier 26 will expand programming for Hudson River Park's 17 million annual visitors. In 2008 and 2009, the Lower Manhattan Development Corporation used HUD funds to rebuild the pier to support future development. When current construction is complete, pier will host the science center, free kayaking, and City Winery's sister restaurant, WXY-designed City Vineyard, opening in 2016. HRPT is also getting $10 million from the city for the project, and is applying to the Lower Manhattan Development Corporation for additional support. Construction and completion dates have yet to be finalized. New Yorkers will be able to weigh in on "ideas for uses and programming at the new pier" at Community Board 1's meeting on October 19.
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Rafael Viñoly unveils his 76-story homage to Chicago's Sears Tower
On the heels of a new 86-story project by JAHN. Chicago's South Loop neighborhood is also prepping for a 76-story tower designed by Rafael Viñoly. Both projects were unveiled Tuesday and would be among the tallest buildings in the city if built. Viñoly's project, planned for 113 E. Roosevelt Rd., bears a striking resemblence to the city's most well-known skyscraper: Skidmore, Owings & Merrill's Willis (née Sears) Tower. According to the architect, that's no accident—the "stepping gesture" of the two towers, which would be joined at their bases, recalls the bundled tube structure of Sears, although Viñoly's version opts for silvery, reflective glass and a bevy of thick white mullions that segment the buildings' vertical faces along dozens of horizontal axes. Trees dot the tops of tubes that don't reach full height, terminating columns that form a rotating motion around the towers' central tubes. DNAinfo Chicago reports Miami-based Crescent Heights, which already owns about 5,000 units in the South Loop, is the project's developer. The eastern tower would be built first, over the next two years.
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Rafael Viñoly's car-melting Walkie-Talkie Tower named Britain's worst building of the year
After roasting cars and carpets, London's 20 Fenchurch Street, nicknamed the Walkie-Talkie Tower, has itself been roasted as the winner of the Carbuncle Cup, British architecture's least desirable award. Building Design magazine, which organizes the award, described the tower as a “gratuitous glass gargoyle.” The structure, designed by Rafael Viñoly, has struggled for any form of critical acclaim since it opened in 2010. “It is a challenge finding anyone who has something positive to say about this building,” said BD editor Thomas Lane. The Guardian's architecture critic, Oliver Wainwright, was just as unforgiving when he likened the structure to a "sanitary towel." Londoners have claimed that the Walkie-Talkie, nicknamed for its visual resemblance to the handheld communication device, has blown them away—and into the street. Twenty Fenchurch Street's embarrassing wind problem has prompted the City of London to look at "changing the way it works with developers." Knocking people off their feet isn't the only accusation lobbed at Viñoly's design. In what is becoming a growing list of misdemeanors, developers of 20 Fenchurch Street have had to pay £946 ($1,500) in compensation after the tower burnt a Jaguar and a hole into a shop carpet. A screen has been built to halt the reflective death-ray. In its turbulent start to London life, the building's reflective power has been harnessed by the locals, as one resident was able to fry an egg with the building's glare. That led to another nickname, the "fryscraper." "When I once described Rafael Viñoly as a menace to London," tweeted ex-RIBA president George Ferguson, "I didn't think he was going to burn it." The architect's proposal has prompted equally vicious responses during its planning stages. UNESCO voiced its distaste for the design and English Heritage bestowed it as a "brutally dominant expression of commercial floor space" with an "oppressive and overwhelming form." Peter Wynne Rees, chief planner of the City of London, has since admitted he made a mistake for the building's location, saying that he was persuaded by the project's public element, a 525-foot-high garden. Even this signature feature has been the subject of scourge. Wainwright, who is clearly not the building's biggest fan, wrote in the Guardian that it "feels like you’re trapped in an airport, you can barely see the city because of a steel cage – and the more money you shell out, the worse it gets." Twenty Fenchurch Street's issues with sun glare are nothing new to modern architecture however. In Las Vegas, the Vdara Hotel startled Bill Pintas, a Chicago lawyer and businessman, when he started to smell his hair burning.  "I actually thought that, Oh my God, we've destroyed the ozone layer because I am being burned," Pintas told NBC's TODAY show back in 2010. "My head was steaming hot... I could actually smell my hair burning." In Dallas, too, the Museum Tower by Scott Johnson has been subject to criticism as it fried artwork at its neighbor, the Nasher Sculpture Center. And of course, Gehry's Disney Concert Hall in Los Angeles, drew international attention for sizzling surrounding buildings and blinding drivers. Blustery conditions from skyscrapers are also no new problem. New York City's Flatiron Building caused an "ankle-revealing sensation" in the early 20th century with winds it sent rushing to the sidewalk. In 1983, engineering consultant Lev Zetlin asked for laws to halt the wind-tunnel-effect termed "downdraught" in New York.
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British architects are now deciding which one of these six finalists is the worst building of the year
Six of the worst buildings in Britain, shortlisted by British magazine Building Design, will battle it out to claim British architecture's least wanted trophy. The projects were chosen by a panel comprising BD editor Thomas Lane; architectural critic Ike Ijeh; writer, broadcaster, and historian Gillian Darley; and architectural designer Eleanor Jolliffe. The list was whittled from ten projects put forward by readers who felt compelled enough to voice their distaste about the structures that rudely entered their view. The Carbuncle Cup is in its ninth successive year and is proving to be a humorous, tongue-in-cheek response to the Stirling Prize awarded by RIBA. Pedigree, it seems, won't save you from being shortlisted for the prize. Foster+Partners and Rogers Stirk Harbour+Partners have previously made the list for their Moor House office development and One Hyde Park projects in London. Past winners include the Strata SE1 building in south London by BFLS and the Cutty Sark renovation in Greenwich by Grimshaw Architects. Last year, Sheppard Robson's Woolwich Central took the prize. The winner of the Carbuncle Cup will be announced next Wednesday, September 9. Take a look at this year's finalists below. 20 Fenchurch Sreet (aka The Walkie-Talkie Tower) London Rafael Viñoly Architects Woodward Hall North Acton, London Careyjones Chapmantolcher Whittle Building Peterhouse, University of Cambridge John Simpson Architects Waltham Forest YMCA London Robert Kilgour Architects City Gateway Swaythling, Southampton Fluid Design Parliament House Lambeth, London Keith Williams Architects
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This dying mall in Silicon Valley will be reborn with a 30-acre blanket of green roofs including a vineyard, orchard, and walking trails
Green roofs these days are the new blacktops. And just when you thought they couldn't get any bigger, there are now plans to build a 30-acre park blanketing a mixed-use, $3 billion development in Cupertino, California. Right now, the site is the dying Vallco Shopping Mall. Developers Sand Hill Property bought the mall last year and hired Rafael Viñoly and Olin Landscape Architects to redevelop the 50 acre site. "[Sand Hill] didn’t quite know what they would get when Viñoly traveled to their offices in Menlo Park last April for a first-round presentation," wrote the Silicon Valley Business Journal. "While other architects came armed with reams of site plans and renderings, Viñoly had a suitcase. In it was a model of his concept, which he assembled piece by piece, topping it off with the roof park." Renderings show a rolling lush carpet of green capping a 15-block grid of buildings below. But that green is not just a lawn. The rooftop park will feature quite an unusual mix of amenities: a vineyard, close to four miles of trails, an orchard, a playground, as well as lots of oak trees. Plans also include 800 apartments and over 250,000 square feet of retail. There are multiple plazas, a market hall, 2 million square feet of offices, and parking mostly below ground. The highest point in the development would top out at seven stories. "To secure the community buy-in, the developer is going all-out, promising to contribute more than $40 million to build a new K-5 elementary school, replace portable classrooms and provide an “innovation center” to the Fremont Union High School District, among other goodies," reported the SVBJ.
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A circular bridge will go up this November over Uruguay's beautiful Laguna Garzon, connecting two formerly remote shores
If conservatives bristle at building a bridge over a UNESCO World Heritage Site, just make it circular. This ring-shaped bridge by architect Rafael Viñoly will superimpose the Laguna Garzon, its circular design meant to minimize its environmental and visual impact by recalling a winding road—plus the fact that it uniquely affords veritable 360-degree views. [Video courtesy Teledoce.] The final cost of the project is $11 million, with the state providing $1.8 million. Argentinian real estate developer Eduardo Costantini, owner of high-end guesthouses Las Garzas in Rocha, will foot the remaining bill. The Uruguayan Ministry of Transport has eyeballed the prospect of a bridge over the lagoon since 1950, but the project did not start until May 2013. Slated to connect the cities of Maldonado and Rocha when it opens in November, the bridge has the potential to mediate the flow of travelers and tourism dollars up and down the eastern seaboard. It will replace the current system of rafts that connect the two cities, which allows only two cars to pass at time, depriving Rocha of the development frenzy seen in Maldonado. Statistics indicate generally favorable views of the project, with 81 percent of Rocha residents and 64 percent of Maldona residents who spoke positively about the bridge. Government estimates indicate that 1,000 vehicles will traverse the bridge daily, with an increase in those numbers during the peak summer months. Scheduled to open in November, the bridge is well under construction. View the video above from Teledoce to see how it works.
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Edward M. Kennedy Institute
The building's plan complements the neighboring JFK Library with a pair of triangular
Courtesy Edward M. Kennedy Institute
Let’s start next door. Enter the John F. Kennedy Presidential Library and Museum (I.M. Pei & Associates, 1979) on Columbia Point at the University of Massachusetts–Boston, and you find yourself on a balcony, looking into the space-frame tower that will later complete your experience. A placard explains the water view: “When Jacqueline Kennedy Onassis sought the perfect location for the JFK presidential library, she looked to the sea that President Kennedy loved so well.” The truth is rather more complicated. Siting and designing the library was a dreary, 16-year slog of shrinking expectations and genuine heartbreak. Kennedy himself had chosen an urban site at Harvard, and Pei designed two different schemes accordingly, but logistics and community opposition stalled the project for a decade. In 1975, the Kennedys turned to maritime sites, and landed at Columbia Point—home to U. Mass. and a garbage dump. “It was a backwater, literally,” said Ted Musho, Pei’s associate partner on the project. “[U. Mass.] went there for the same reason we wound up there: Nobody else would take us. We’d been thrown out of the best site in the world, and here we are. So what do you do?” To sell the family on the dump as the best remaining option, said Musho, “We rented a big flatbed truck and we loaded everybody on, and we drove out as far as we could onto the muck, and I remember Mrs. Kennedy saying, ‘Where are you proposing putting the library?’”
Finally the site was refined, but “I.M. suffered. I mean, he suffered” from the endless compromise, said Musho. And now the budget was tight: “It should have been white marble, white granite—if we had the money! There is nothing about the building that was commensurate with the aura of the president’s name on it! It’s an inexpensive presidential library.” The resulting complex has always had a faintly depressing air, not because it is a memorial to a slain president but because, as such, it sat alone, and vaguely underinspired, in a vaguely suboptimal place. It is within this context that Rafael Viñoly has produced a resoundingly smart, sensitive design for the Edward M. Kennedy Institute for the United States Senate that quietly transforms the entire site. Both architecturally and programmatically, John seems happier with his brother beside him: His building is no longer so isolated, and the tragic matter of his death is relieved by Teddy’s clever, youth-oriented program centered on model Senate proceedings.
A replica of the US Senate.
The institute is an object lesson in the power of limitations. Ted wanted a building that complemented John’s but did not compete with it. Viñoly’s symmetrical, low-rise plan leaves the spotlight on Pei’s geometries, but responds to them with aligned triangular “wings” and a subtler vertical mass—gray metal composite to Pei’s black glass. The axial entrance path alludes to neoclassical Washington, D.C., creating what partner David Rolland called “a procession, a formal entry into the building.” A thin strip of gravel at the building’s edge, where concrete meets lawn, is brilliant but nearly invisible; it could be thickened. Entering the lobby, you face a long, rich wall of Virginia mist granite, in the center of which a small well leads to a pair of tiny, traditional oak doors: the Senate chamber. First you’ll circumnavigate it, learning—through electronic projections on the outside walls, and your tablet computer—how hard it is to hammer out a bill that can be voted into law. Hidden classrooms on the perimeter allow school groups to test the process in depth.
The entrance procession.
The corridors are masterfully done. Painted in deep, warm grays and floored in polished concrete, they are softly lit to avoid the gloom of a cinema. Among the grays are dark oak benches and signs (both by exhibit designer ESI Design) that, while modern in form and typography, allude in tone and finish to the Senate’s historic furnishings. Above, a central light strip is flanked by gently pitched ceiling planes. Floor and ceiling joints are both recessed, with indirect lighting at the floor, to make the space “look more architectonic rather than more massive,” said Rolland. Hallways this simple could easily be soulless; these are thoughtful and comfortable. You then experience the Senate replica—with its yellow gallery walls, navy and red textiles, Levanto marble, cherry desks, and oval tray ceiling—as a sunburst. Guests are encouraged to stage a floor debate on an issue of the day, and actors start the process. Viñoly’s restraint is important not in the tired sense of adherence to high-modern lines, but in its palpable respect for the older design he was effectively adjoining. His team worked with the materials, formal language, and color palette they were given—in an age when most additions to historic structures use none of the three, and often lean on glass as a way to evade them all. This is the polar opposite of a trend-driven building, and the effect is as fresh as the breeze off Dorchester Bay. Some of the errors were, so to speak, forced. The lobby is empty. Viñoly’s original design had a giant ribbed skylight throwing bands of sun on the floor, but the budget cut it to one strip. Without such a flourish, the space needs some iconography or a pair of ESI’s oak benches. The landscape, by Sasaki Associates, is inadequate, especially where windows look to the bay past JFK’s loading dock; a tight property line tied the designers’ hands. Traffic circulation is a work in progress. And the Miesian gleam of the glass entry confounds some, leading to embarrassing makeshift signs: “Please find door here ––>.” Would Viñoly ever have sketched this prone form in isolation? Of course not. But he gave his site and his clients, who in this case go well beyond the Kennedys, exactly what they needed: a taste of redemption.
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Eavesdrop> The Bell Rings In Silence: Gossip swirls over changes at AIANY
There was one question on everybody’s mind in New York this spring: What happened to Rick Bell? On March 27, without warning or explanation, the former executive director of AIANY and the Center for Architecture tendered his resignation, effective immediately, which AIANY’s board of directors promptly accepted. The unforthcoming announcement stirred up a steamy fountain of rumor and conjecture—very little of it fit for printing—over what could have precipitated Bell’s speedy departure, and AIANY’s continued reticence on the matter (there seems to be a gag order in place among its staff) hasn’t done anything to lessen the sheer salacious heights to which the gossip has climbed. Bell, for his part, doesn’t seem to be very phased by the upheaval. Eavesdrop spotted him at the Storefront for Art and Architecture’s annual benefit party—held this year in the unfinished lobby of the Rafael Viñoly–designed 432 Park Avenue—wearing a T-shirt that read “I Am Still Alive” and smiling like the cat that ate the canary. Also like a cat, Bell has landed on his feet. On May 8, New York City Department of Design and Construction Commissioner Feniosky Peña-Mora announced that the agency had hired him as its executive director of design and construction excellence. Meanwhile, in an interesting game of musical chairs, the AIANY appointed David Burney, who recently left his post as commissioner of the DDC, as its interim executive director.