Creating a vertical form of public control as Kim’s tower superimposes new layers of public space on the Manhattan city grid
On the edge of Central Park in New York, this high-rise mixed-use building, by MIT graduate Jae Kyung Kim, reinterprets the notion of the grid in two key ways. At an urban scale, through an analysis of how the street grid has historically limited the provision of public space, the project creates sequenced layers of ground, bringing the public up through the building in surprising ways, playing with your perceptions of promenade, horizon and threshold. Secondly, the Cartesian/Miesian tower grid that traditionally organises both the structure and the envelope, has been discarded to make a twisted form that responds to programme and environment.
Alongside the plazas, the building has a shopping arcade, gallery and theatre, with hotel and residential accommodation − a true attempt to create a city in a building.
Stacked twisted volumes create a varied succession of floor plans
Viewing platforms and escalators take advantage of the scenery
The tower adds a new element to the NY skyline: the architectural void