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Thread: Columbus Circle (Historical)

  1. #1

    Default Columbus Circle (Historical)

    I stumbled across this recently, from 1985. I know we got into this on another thread once, but I think it was off topic. I did a search for AOL and Columbus Circle and couldn't find it, so I'm starting this dedicated thread. The redevelopment of Columbus Circle is something that was bounced around for ages. If you have old renderings from prior proposals please contribute.

  2. #2

    Default Columbus Circle (historical)

    At some point in the 80s Donald Trump also tried to develop this site for the tallest building in the world. The architect was Eli Attia.




    (Edited by chris at 10:36 pm on June 5, 2003)

  3. #3

  4. #4

    Default Columbus Circle (historical)

    Great, I think I may have even been confusing that page with a thread on the forum.


    Helmut Jahn

    Robert A. M. Stern and Costas Kondylis

    Skidmore, Owings & Merrill and Elkus/Manfredi

  5. #5

    Default Columbus Circle (historical)

    I've heard proposals for Columbus Square. Some were rather outlandish.

  6. #6

    Default Columbus Circle (historical)

    From the 1980's

    Michael Graves

    SOM Moshe Safdie

    James Stewart

    From the City Review article:
    "Where's Humpty-Dumpty?
    The New Coliseum Fiasco"

    By Carter B. Horsley

    Columbus Center Muprhy & Jahn
    10 Columbus Circle

    "Herbert Muschamps, the architecture critic of The New York Times, singled out one for very lavish praise, that of Murphy/Jahn for Tishman Speyer Properties, Mirage Corp., and Morgan Stanley Partners.

    The design is one of Jahn's least inspired and least flamboyant. Jahn set the architectural world on edge with his great State of Illinois Center in Chicago, a dazzling, curved building with a spectacular, large cylindrical atrium, and he is generally recognized as one of the master architects in the world. In New York, he is not well represented, but each of his three major office buildings here show his inventive and unusual designs: the International Plaza office building across from Bloomingdale's at 750 Lexington Avenue has a very handsome retail frontage of curved bays and a fine stepped, curved pyramid top; Park Avenue Tower between Madison and Park Avenues and 54th and 55th Streets, has slanted sides and bulbous courses and an impressive, highly visible through-block lobby; and 425 Lexington Avenue has an abstracted cornice. All these buildings, however, have strange palettes and a lack of grace.

    Jahn's design for the Coliseum site retains the existing tower and adds two more, set at angles with each other, on the south side of the site. The renderings and the model indicate that the angled towers would be dark with corner windows, but do not convey enough information to determine the true color of the glass facades. The notion of twin towers, of course, is the great characteristic of Central Park West, but these towers run east to west along 58th Street and therefore are out of line with Central Park West.

    The Jahn design may be nice, possibly, but certainly is not exciting and actually is not the handsomest in the new group. Indeed, its raised skylight at the center of the base fronting on the circle is harsh and awkward and relates to nothing."

    Columbus Center Robert AM Stern/Costas Kondylis
    10 Columbus Center
    750 feet
    Robert A. M. Stern and Costas Kondylis

    Rendering by Ernest Burden III *
    "The best-looking design is by Robert A. M. Stern and Costas Kondylis for the Trump Organization and Colony Capital. Its 750-foot-high tower, shown at the left, is angled to face the park and its main facade is modulated nicely near the top in a style reminiscent of early Lower Manhattan skyscrapers. Seen from other angles, however, the tower is asymmetrical with a large, ungainly wing that extends to the west."

    Columbus Center Kevin Roche John Dinkeloo & Associates
    10 Columbus Center
    2 670 foot towers
    Kevin Roche John Dinkeloo & Associates

    The design of Kevin Roche John Dinkeloo & Associates for Silverstein Properties is particularly odd. It calls for two 670-foot-high towers on the 60th Street side of the site and adds a few floors to the existing smaller office tower at 10 Columbus Circle. The tall towers are very attractive with horizontal banding and setbacks and are at angles with each other, but the smaller south tower is horrid, a new glass top over the existing grayish lump of brick. Roche's cool modern touch on the tall towers is no where apparent on the rest of the site. It must have been a rush job. If the tall towers' facade treatment were fully applied to the south tower and the base, this would be a tempting, but not great design.

    Columbus Center SOM
    10 Columbus Circle
    2 750 foot towers
    Skidmore, Owings & Merrill and Elkus/Manfredi
    Old Design

    The best recycled design is for the Related Companies and Himmel & Company by Skidmore, Owings & Merrill and Elkus/Manfredi. This multi-towered scheme is modeled closely on David Childs' final design for Mortimer Zuckerman that died an ignoble death in the first go-round. When Childs moved to S.O.M.'s New York office, he changed its sleek modernism to a more Classical, Post-Modern bent and his Zuckerman designs were very fine of this kind. This watered-down version appears to have slightly better massing but much inferior tower tops. It is one of the few submissions, however, to recognize that the site straddles Central Park South and is its terminus and therefore worthy of some gesture, here a very large globe atop the low-rise base.

    Columbus Center *KPF
    10 Columbus Circle
    Kohn Pedersen & Fox/ Gruzen Samton

    Renderings by Brian Burr
    Kohn Pederson Fox Associates, perhaps the nation's finest high-rise architects of the past two decades, teamed with Gruzen Samton, perhaps the city's most intelligent designer of public buildings, for the Lefrak Organization, Edward J. Minskoff Equities and DLJ Equity Partners. Who woulda thunk this design would emerge, a pedestrian scheme better suited for New Jersey than New York?

    Columbus Center Gary Handel & Associates/Polshek Partnership
    10 Columbus Circle
    Gary Handel & Associates/Polshek Partnership

    Rendering by Thomas W Schaller
    "Lastly, Polshek & Partners and Gary Edward Handel & Associates designed a fairly bold tower for Millenium Partners, but its attempt to mimic the slanted roofline of Citicorp Center is not successful."

  7. #7

    Default Columbus Circle (historical)

    Wow. I really like all of them. Well a few do look really outlandish, but these were really great. I'd say my top favorite would be the one by James Stewart.

  8. #8

    Default Columbus Circle (historical)

    Quote: from DominicanoNYC on 10:55 am on June 9, 2003
    Wow. I really like all of them. Well a few do look really outlandish, but these were really great. I'd say my top favorite would be the one by James Stewart.
    Some of them are cool. I wished they were built, but then again the AOL-Time Warner Building is also cool looking.

  9. #9
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    New York City

    Default Columbus Circle (historical)

    The crowns are a bit too subdued for my taste. *I was expecting them to be more distinct from the rest of the building; instead, they seem to be of the same color glass as the towers themselves. *I certainly like them, but they still need a little more oomph near the top, which their preliminary design definitely supplied.

  10. #10

    Default Columbus Circle (historical)

    Given what preceded, the outcome is a miracle.

  11. #11

    Default Columbus Circle (historical)

    Derek2k3: what you have labeled as KPF is the Boston Propeties design by Swanke Hayden Connell. The KPF scheme was heavily postmodern.

    My favorite scheme was a three-tower WTB proposal by Cesar Pelli that was a stepped spire. His scheme too was changed beyond recognition.

  12. #12

    Default Columbus Circle (historical)


    Have you access to rendering of either of these proposals?

  13. #13

    Default Columbus Circle (historical)

    Chris are you aware of the Municipal Art Society Bookstore?

  14. #14

    Default Columbus Circle (historical)

    Urban Center Books, off the courtyard of the Palace Hotel on Madison, yes?

  15. #15

    Default Columbus Circle (historical)


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