Snøhetta opened up a few of the facades, added a public backyard and improved air flow and elevation programs as a part of the conversion of the 647-foot-high (197-metre) skyscraper from a single-occupant tower into an workplace for a number of occupants.
Snøhetta founding associate Craig Dykers advised Dezeen that the strategy to constructing was “surgical”, with nearly all of the interventions occurring on the within, which allowed the studio to open up elements of the outside.
“Oftentimes have been requested to take a look at buildings or locations which have stopped having worth to folks,” he stated.
“Nobody had occupied it for therefore lengthy that it wanted a well being evaluation in a method. It wanted recent air. It wanted daylight and wanted spaciousness given to its tenants and wanted entry to nature, all of these items to deliver it again to the glory that it had at one time.”
Now known as 550 Madison, the granite-clad skyscraper designed by Philip Johnson and John Burgee was nicknamed the “Chippendale” constructing when it opened in 1984 due to the pediment that resembles furnishings by the well-known American producer of the identical title.
Initially constructed for American telecommunications firm AT&T, and referred to as the AT&T constructing, the skyscraper was later occupied by Sony after which sat vacant for quite a lot of years earlier than being acquired by world funding agency The Olayan Group.
In 2017, Snøhetta unveiled its plan to reconfigure the facade of the decrease parts of the constructing, however the plan was nixed by the town authorities, which gave the constructing landmark standing after protests from native communities.
The realised renovation aimed to respect the modified standing by scaling again interventions to the facade. Solely a small portion of the unique stone was eliminated as a way to create a window block for the brand new facilities ground and it was reused to restore stone in different areas.
In line with Dyker, the primary aim was to open up the areas on the base of the tower to be extra public-facing and to revamp the storefronts on road stage.
“The decrease stage of the constructing was difficult,” he stated. “Phillip Johnson stated the identical factor. He actually criticized his personal constructing.”
“It is an ideal constructing,” he continued. “I nonetheless actually prefer it, and I’ve at all times loved it, and I really feel like I prefer it much more now that you may benefit from the decrease ranges of the constructing.”
“There was loads of dialogue about how a lot glass we have been going to placed on the constructing and that induced some controversy” added Dyker. “However what was essential was that we discovered a approach to deliver gentle into these amenity areas,” he continued.
“So we have added glass to the west aspect of the constructing overlooking the gardens beneath and made the house a bit extra related to the outside than it was beforehand that stage had no little or no daylight.”
With the intention to open up the areas at floor stage, Snøhetta moved an elevator core to create “unbroken” views from Madison Avenue, by means of the foyer and into the general public gardens.
The backyard is manufactured from a redesigned mid-block passageway. Snøhetta added a water function and a glass cover to the house.
“Our design for the brand new backyard transforms the streets surrounding the long-lasting 550 Madison constructing into accessible, lavishly vegetated, and extremely seen public house,” stated Snøhetta panorama architect Michelle Delk.
The studio additionally modified the air flow system to offer higher air high quality and use much less power and to open up extra inside areas that have been beforehand occupied by mechanical elements.
The system additionally allowed for a few of the portholes of the constructing that have been used within the air flow system to be opened up and transformed into home windows.
“It is a greener system in that sense,” Dyker advised Dezeen. “But in addition we have been capable of take away 1000’s of sq. ft of house that had been devoted to mechanical house.”
Eradicating the outdated system additionally allowed the studio to create extra top within the porticos and workplace areas. Whereas the tenants are allowed to make adjustments to the person areas, Snøhetta insisted that marble staircases on the higher ranges be retained.
American structure studio Gensler was answerable for redesigning the foyer, which incorporates new terrazzo flooring and a dangling sculpture by Polish artist Alicja Kwade. New York design studio Rockwell Group carried out the inside design for the facilities stage.
Snøhetta was based in Oslo, Norway and is formally primarily based there and in New York. The studio has launched quite a lot of renovations of landmarks together with the 2017 renovation of Occasions Sq. in addition to the conversion of an industrial web site into a spot for the Oslo Opera Home.