St. Nicholas Back at WTC

East
Friday, October 14, 2011
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Aswered prayers: St. Nicholas to rebuild.

Answered prayers: St. Nicholas to rebuild. (markamav/Flickr.com)

“Win-win!,” were the two words that Father Mark Arey chose to describe this morning’s deal signed with the Port Authority that will bring St. Nicholas Church back to the World Trade Center site. Arey, the spokesperson for the Greek Archdioses in America, said the agreement was signed in the governor’s Manhattan office by church council member Michael Jaharis and the Port Authority’s soon-to-be-departing-director Chris Ward. Governor Cuomo stood witness to the signing with Archbishop Demetrios. The governors prodding of the Port brought the two parties toward an agreement. The new building will sit at the corner of Liberty and Greenwich streets near Four World Trade.

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Performer: An Auto-Affirmation for Everyone

East
Friday, October 14, 2011
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Next time you are in Times Square, don’t be shy when you see a spotlight– no matter how lame your dance moves are, you are guaranteed an explosive roar of applause from an invisible, enthusiastic crowd of people as long as you are moving. (What a refreshing departure from the notorious American Idol jury.) This location-appropriate spotlight installation is an interactive public art work by Adam Frank, an installation artist and a product inventor, whose body of work “represents an ongoing investigation of light and interactivity.” His shadow-casting oil lamp, LUMEN, is one of the MoMA Store’s best-selling items.

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Video> Noguchi Museum Takes Civic Action

East
Thursday, October 13, 2011
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Detail from map of the LIC study area by WXY's Fall 2010 studio at Parsons.

Detail from map of the LIC study area by WXY's Fall 2010 studio at Parsons. (AN/Stoelker)

With buses running from the Lever House on Park Avenue, the Noguchi Museum was flush with Manhattanites last night for the opening of Civic Action: A Vision for Long Island City. The show of ideas by local artist teams—led by Natalie Jeremijenko, Mary Miss, Rirkrit Tiravanija and George Trakas—fleshes out urban dreams for the mostly industrial area. In anything but an autocratic manner, the show—the first ever at the museum to include contemporary artists and not Noguchi—encourages dialogue between large institutions, government, and the public.

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Archtober Building of the Day #12: Betances Community Center

East
Wednesday, October 12, 2011
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The Betances Community Center in the Bronx (Courtesy Stephan Yablon Architect)

The Betances Community Center in the Bronx (Courtesy Stephan Yablon Architect)

When is a Center really a center? Well first of all it’s got to have a center, don’t you think? The Betances Community Center has a splendid gym holding strong in the middle of the plan, full of warm, white light modulated by the south-facing glass block wall and monitor side walls of Kalwall. Originally intended to house a boxing ring and bright orange bleacher seating, the space is now multi-purpose with the bleachers accordioned to the walls; the famous boxing program moved elsewhere. Even without the ring, the architecture packs a wallop of clarity, modesty, attention to detail, and programmatic resolution.

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Manny Hanny & SEQR Together Again

East
Wednesday, October 12, 2011
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The Manufacturers Trust circa 1954.

The Manufacturers Trust, circa 1954. (Courtesy Esto/Ezra Stoller)

Yesterday, the Appellate Division of the State Supreme Court denied a request by the city and Vornado seeking to dismiss Justice Lucy Billings’ ruling which allied a protected natural resource with an urban landmark. In ruling that the Citizens Emergency Committee to Protect Preservation (CECPP) and Pratt professor Eric Allison had legal standing for their petition, Billings cited Save the Pine Bush v. Common Council City of Albany, a case addressing the protection of a forest Upstate under the State Environmental Quality Review Act. In deciding against the appeal, the court effectively said that they won’t hear the Manufacturers Hanover case in piecemeal.  The case returns to Justice Billings’ courtroom next Wednesday where CECPP is asking for everything from reams of email correspondence between Landmarks and Vornado, to the new tenant’s lease and rental terms.

High Art: Kim Beck’s The Sky Is the Limit/NYC

East
Tuesday, October 11, 2011
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A view from St. Marks. (Cindy Chun)

Just after 4:00p.m. Sunday afternoon, cryptic messages visible for miles around Manhattan were written in the sky, spelling out, among other things, “Last Chance.” Out of context to millions in the streets below, the messages were slightly unnerving and deliberately vague. Curious speculation as each giant letter was traced into the sky led many to wonder what the message actually meant: An ad? A terrorist’s warning? A persistent marriage proposal? It turns out the display was part of an art project by Kim Beck called The Sky Is the Limit/NYC and sponsored by the Friends of the High Line.

Continue reading after the jump.

WTC Update> POPS on the Periphery

East
Monday, October 10, 2011
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The flag from One World Trade as reflected in Snohetta's Memorila Museum Pavilion. (AN/Stoelker)

The mirror facade of Snoehetta's Memorial Museum Pavilion reflects the flag hanging on One World Trade. (AN/Stoelker)

It’s been a while since we did the once around the super block that is the World Trade Center site. We held off on WTC Updates until the Tenth Anniversary news fest subsided. Now that all eyes are on the Zuccotti Park and Occupy Wall Street, we figured it’d be a good time to take another walkabout. From an urban planning standpoint, the Privately Owned Public Space (POPS) status of Zuccotti Park has stirred up quite a bit of interest.

As the 9/11 Memorial opened only last month—and remains a highly controlled space—the only way to navigate around the site is to walk through a series of interior and exterior POPS. Right now Occupy Wall Street’s takeover of the Brookfield-owned park is getting the lion’s share of attention, but elsewhere there are little known gatherings in other POPS around Lower Manhattan that happen every day.

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Open House New York: This Weekend!.  The OHNY launch party to be held in the offices of HOK (above) on Friday, October 14.The OHNY launch party to be held in the offices of HOK (above) on Friday, October 14. There is no organization in New York that has done more to publicize this city’s hidden and out of the way architecture and infrastructure than Open House New York (OHNY). One weekend a year, it opens up buildings and spaces normally closed to the public for tours, lectures, and site visits. The yearly event happens this weekend—October 15th and 16th—and to celebrate its 10th year, OHNY is hosting a launch party at the beautiful new offices of HOK across from Bryant Park. The party is on Friday, October 14 from 7pm to 9pm at HOK, and you can purchase party  tickets (and support OHNY) at the new Open House New York event website.

 

Archtober Building of the Day #7: IAC Headquarters

East
Friday, October 7, 2011
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Frank Gehry's IAC Building in Manhattan. (Drew Dies / Flickr)

Frank Gehry's IAC Building in Manhattan. (Drew Dies / Flickr)

IAC Headquarters
550 West 18th Street
New York, NY

The IAC Headquarters is Frank Gehry’s first building in New York. Neither a symphony hall nor an art gallery clad in riveting titanium that creates its own economic system, it is rather a diminutive swell of faceted glass with a graded white frit. Compared to most big-name office buildings, the IAC is built at a much more personal scale. Built as-of-right and opened to little in the way of the usual starchitect fanfare, some might notice it’s hard to find the front door. What you may not know, however, is how bird friendly the building is.

Continue reading after the jump.

Proposal Transforms Park Space Under the Manhattan Bridge

East
Friday, October 7, 2011
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(Courtesy HAO)

(Courtesy HAO)

Let’s face it, outside of Central Park, Manhattan isn’t known for its abundance of open space. This is beginning to change, however, as in this increasingly innovative architectural age, people are looking to odd, underutilized remnants in the city, from abandoned rail lines to decrepit industrial buildings and toxic waterfronts to create the next amazing public space. One such space sits just beneath the Manhattan Bridge, where Architecture for Humanity has secured a grant and invited nine design firms to take on Coleman Oval Skate Park. Holm Architecture Office (HAO) with Niklas Thormark has taken on the challenge and revealed their program-driven proposal.

Read more after the jump.

Archtober Building of the Day #6: Hearst Tower

East
Thursday, October 6, 2011
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The Hearst Tower. (Mike Dunn / Flickr)

The Hearst Tower. (Mike Dunn / Flickr)

Hearst Tower
959 8th Avenue
New York, NY

As written in the AIANY Design Awards issue of Oculus, Summer 2007:

With its efficient use of resources, abundant natural daylight and fresh air, and modern technologies, this 856,000-square-foot building designed by Foster + Partners and completed in 2006 is the first in New York City to receive a LEED Gold rating for its core, shell, and interiors. Most notably, it was constructed using more than 80% recycled steel. The diagrid framing uses 20% less steel than conventionally framed towers, and it was designed to consume 25% less energy than most Manhattan towers.

Continue reading after the jump.

Crocodile Tears for I.M. Pei’s Terminal 6

East
Thursday, October 6, 2011
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I.M. Pei's Terminal 6 will be demolished. (Courtesy Amiaga Studios)

I.M. Pei's Terminal 6 will be demolished. (Courtesy Amiaga Studios)

Terminal 6 has been on Death’s Row at least since June 2010. So why are so many aflutter now? It’s an old adage but a persistent one: It hasn’t happened until the New York Times reports it, or until there’s a television tie-in as newsworthy as the cheesy jet set-orama, “Pan Am” on ABC.

Continue reading after the jump.

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