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Thread: Proposed WTC Tower #5 on Liberty Street

  1. #46
    Build the Tower Verre antinimby's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by finnman69 View Post
    Rock Center is an almost perfect example of great urban masterplanning carried out down to the level of building detail. The fact there is a single tall tower with clusters of small buildings at a uniform height creates a beautiful environment that people visit. The fact there is beautiful art deco detail carried out uniformly helps create a wonderful shopping experience. Having a lowrise streetscape for retail and well planned esplanades brings in pedestrian traffic from the streets. You could have the same program Rock Center has now, offices, skating rink, retail etc, but if there was no order or purpose to the plan, it would not be as successful or as popular to visit. You cannot dismiss the power of architecture on a grand scale to create a world class urban environment. When you leave out the planning you end up with a strip mall.
    I fear that having a row of unrelated towers around the rebuilt ground zero will be a huge missed opportunity with no heirarchy and no sense of place (like Rock Center).
    It's apparent that you seem to have this fascination with everything uniform.

    I hate to burst your bubble there, but the success of Rockefeller Center is not because it has uniform mass/proportions/materials.

    Read my earlier post again as I've explained that already.

    And just because RC is successful does not preclude the WTC towers from being just as successful in the future.

    A team of world-renowned architectural firms and engineers are working as we speak in trying to make improvements and tweeks to the original master plan, which is interestingly enough, is by Libeskind.

    Retail and open plazas are all part of the plan for the WTC, so nothing at RC is missing there either.

    The claim that because of your fear that the towers don't speak to each other will prevent it from being a desirable place for New Yorkers and tourists alike to come to is nothing but nonsense.

  2. #47
    Senior Member Bob's Avatar
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    I will respectfully disagree that Rockefeller Center's appeal has nothing to do with the art deco. In fact it absolutely DOES. The art deco sensibilities add everything to the collection of buildings. The massing of the towers is appealing. The use of limestone is warm and inviting. The "art" in art deco tastefully adds to the buildings while serving up the drama of Gotham. In short, this wonderful complex of buildings came at a time when great architects, schooled in the classics, worked together and fashioned something that was simply great on every level. Art deco/art moderne was the glue that held it together. Try getting that same level of warmth and appeal using only computers.

  3. #48

    Default thank you

    Quote Originally Posted by Bob View Post
    I will respectfully disagree that Rockefeller Center's appeal has nothing to do with the art deco. In fact it absolutely DOES. The art deco sensibilities add everything to the collection of buildings. The massing of the towers is appealing. The use of limestone is warm and inviting. The "art" in art deco tastefully adds to the buildings while serving up the drama of Gotham. In short, this wonderful complex of buildings came at a time when great architects, schooled in the classics, worked together and fashioned something that was simply great on every level. Art deco/art moderne was the glue that held it together. Try getting that same level of warmth and appeal using only computers.
    You get it. Tishman Speyer certainly alsodid when they spent a ton of money to preserve and enhance the existing construction, and in doing so ADDED VALUE:

    Quote Originally Posted by elfgam View Post
    B) RC has attracted so many of those events because, first and foremost, it is a GREAT SPACE. The quality of its streets and plazas has a lot to do with it being a unified urban scheme... unlike so much of NYC's grid which is a continuous fabric, RC has a series of well defined public spaces and this accounts for the festivals and activites that congregate there... this has nothing to do of course with it being in the Art Deco style or being stone instead of glass... but it has everything to do with the fact that buildings are conceived of as a means to define space as opposed to sculptural objects loosely thrown about the site.
    Elfgam, my only disagreement with your otherwise spot on and thoughtful evaluation of RC and the WTC is the Art Deco treatment does matter in this case. The exterior plazas and streetscape relate to the internal public spaces including lobbies and circulation corridors, the Art deco detail is carried out on the exteriors and interiors. The experience of the entire place is dynamic but uniform in design. You know you are still in Rockefeller Center everywhere you go whether its to the skating rink or inside an office building. Could Rock Center have been done in glass? Maybe. But then that glass might have had to have been utilized everywhere. Rock Center's facades define urban edges and it's own internal streets. The massing and scale were all successfully thought about and coordinated in one huge urban gesture.

    My big concern at the proposed WTC is you have very different looking buildings with the possibility of competing design treatments (ie visual chaos) reducing the definition of the street walls. I dont trust renderings any more and my gut tells me the WTC 'wall' of towers facing the memorial plaza will eventually feel cold, sterile and just like any other street of office towers. They may water down the power of the master plan which you correctly identified as the towers spiraling down around the memorial plaza. I don't get the feeling there is a 'team' at all of architects working and coordinating on the proposed office towers. I see individual firms cranking out buildings for Larry Silverstein plugged into a masterplan foot print. After the towers are designed they generate renderings of all the towers together and it's over.

    Now lets see what Tishman Speyer thought about the importance and value of maintaining the uniformity of spirit:

    http://www.tishmanspeyer.com/CaseStu...ndex.aspx?id=6

    Rockefeller Center is the most recognized commercial property in the world. Defining midtown Manhattan, the Center's ten art deco buildings encompass six square blocks between Fifth Avenue and the Avenue of the Americas… SITUATION
    Defining midtown Manhattan, the Center's ten art deco buildings encompass six square blocks between Fifth Avenue and the Avenue of the Americas, from 48th to 51st Streets. With approximately 8.5 million rentable square feet and features that include Radio City Music Hall, Christie's Auction House, the world-famous skating rink, more than 200 retail stores and dining venues, plus the broadcast studios of NBC, it is a true American icon known throughout the world.

    However, by the mid-1990s, the Center had been placed in bankruptcy. In 1996 Tishman Speyer joined in a partnership with four other prominent investors to acquire the property and embarked on an ambitious redevelopment program to restore and revitalize the Center. Then, in April 2001, together with one other longstanding investment partner, Tishman Speyer acquired the property, assuming full responsibility.

    DEVELOPMENT
    As operating partner and managing and leasing agent, Tishman Speyer led a thoughtful and ambitious redevelopment program that involved reviewing and addressing every aspect of the complex, including office and retail leasing, operating efficiencies and capital expenditure. All 5.8 million square feet of office space were renovated to top-of-the-market standards. The Center’s 750,000 square feet of retail space were given an upgrade befitting a world-renowned retail attraction. The retail space on the concourse level was redeveloped, with terrazzo marble floors installed.

    Tishman Speyer worked in partnership with the New York City Landmarks Commission and New York City Planning to redesign and enlarge retail storefronts to create attractive, highly desirable retail spaces while maintaining and enhancing the building’s architectural integrity.

    The Rockefeller Center Redevelopment, completed in early 2000, was geared to create a new vibrant retail environment within the complex. The main public areas within the concourse level were completely renovated using imported stone, custom bronze storefronts, and new terrazzo flooring. The project resulted in a strong demand for a mix of retail spaces; several big box retail shops, restaurants and general amenity retail tenants. In addition to the retail component, Tishman Speyer renovated Rockefeller Plaza. This renovation was geared to creating an urban mall feel which was accomplished by using more than $10 million worth of bluestone paving. The end result was a classic renovation using contemporary construction details and materials.

    Tishman Speyer is now restoring the observation deck at 30 Rockefeller, which is anticipated to become one of New York City’s top tourist attractions. Tishman Speyer has worked closely with the New York City Landmark Commission and City Planning to ensure that the improvements are consistent with the historic Art Deco design of Rockefeller Center.

    VALUE CREATED
    Rockefeller Center has now been returned to its rightful place in New York’s professional, recreational, and cultural life. It once again plays host to year-round shows and events including the annual New York International Orchid Show, annual public art installations, concerts in Radio City Music Hall, live television broadcasts, and the lighting of the most famous Christmas tree in the world. It has over 100 major sculptures, murals, metalwork and enamels – including Lee Lawrie's Atlas and Paul Manship's Prometheus. And the Center is a major hub of New York’s subway and bus system, as well as a main connector to the offices, restaurants, and shops to the west including 7th Avenue and Broadway.

    This beautiful landmark has been meticulously preserved as an architectural treasure. At the same time, the top-to-bottom upgrade of the complex’s amenities has re-established Rockefeller Center’s reputation for first-class office facilities and as a world-class retail center. The result is an increase in office occupancy from 86 percent in 1996 to more than 97 percent today. Quality, high profile tenants like NBC have been retained, extended and expanded, and new ones like Christie's Auction House have been added.

    Indeed, Rockefeller Center is now projected to provide an excellent return for the investors, making this well-known city landmark and tourist attraction a profitable real estate venture as well.
    Last edited by finnman69; January 22nd, 2007 at 06:29 PM.

  4. #49
    The Dude Abides
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    Let's try not to get this thread too off-topic. For the record, there have been numerous debates about this design issue, and Rock Center has come up many times. We can save that for the World Trade Center Developments thread.

    Here's my two cents: I don't even think the two should be compared. You're looking at two megaprojects whose fundamentals are incompatible, in terms of everything: location, time, prevailing architectural trends, number of competing players and interests, history, purpose, etc. Simply put, if the new WTC ends up being an urban planning failure, I don't think it will be because it doesn't look like or feel like Rock Center.

  5. #50

    Default see this

    See this post over at the Freedom Tower thread. It's what I am been talking about

    http://www.wirednewyork.com/forum/sh...postcount=3880

  6. #51
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    Sorry that looks terrible. It looks like a modern version of the terrible empire plaza up in albany. I hate repition. Or to a lesser degree 1251 6th, Mcgraww hill and I think it's chase.

    It's funny we are all fans of architercture but come from totally different perspectives. I guess that is how junk like empire plaza gets built.

  7. #52

    Default interestingly enough, the WTC plan sort of follows this

    Quote Originally Posted by Spoon View Post
    Sorry that looks terrible. It looks like a modern version of the terrible empire plaza up in albany. I hate repition. Or to a lesser degree 1251 6th, Mcgraww hill and I think it's chase.

    It's funny we are all fans of architercture but come from totally different perspectives. I guess that is how junk like empire plaza gets built.




    But the scale is all wrong. It sucks at Albany because you have a row of weird stark towers too far apart from each other in an even bigger open plaza contrasted with a giant skyscraper in a town where cuch buildings are totally out of place. Totally different urban density from ground zero.

    Tall towers against an open urban plaza with one tall tower. What's in Albany is far starker. BTW ,the Capitol building in Albany is amazing on the interior.

  8. #53
    Crabby airline hostess - stache's Avatar
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    Default I'm a big fan of Empire Plaza.

    It needs to be in a better location. It reminds me of old Brazilia.

  9. #54
    Disgruntled Optimist lofter1's Avatar
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    Empire Plaza is great as sculpture -- not so good as working architecture.

  10. #55

    Default not to be missed in Albany

    Quote Originally Posted by lofter1 View Post
    Empire Plaza is great as sculpture -- not so good as working architecture.
    http://www.senate.state.ny.us/sws/ab...staircase.html



    but now we are getting way off topic

  11. #56
    Disgruntled Optimist lofter1's Avatar
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    NYS Capitol building is great both as architecture + sculpture

  12. #57

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    While we're off topic:

    the Capitol with the State Education Building






  13. #58

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    Please stop! I'm sure there's a Smallbany forum somewhere else...Let's just keep this to New York like we're supposed to.

  14. #59

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    Sheesh alrighty then. And there is no equivalent Albany forum.

  15. #60
    Crabby airline hostess - stache's Avatar
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    Question Supposed to?

    It's New York state -

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