atmospheric veil

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metals in construction design challenge 2020 runner-ups

type: competition

client: metals in construction design challenge 2020

program: office building

location: 63 madison avenue, new york

area: 675,986 sq ft

calendar: winner 2020

role: re-a.d as design architect

atmospheric veil: the project undertakes to reinterpreting the facade at 63 Madison Avenue, a 675,986 sq. ft. office building to considerably improves the internal efficiency of the offices, opens up the facade to the street, enhances the work conditions through the creation of semi-outdoor spaces within the building plateau. we enable people to reconnect and breathe fresh air during their workday in this typical midtown corner.

 

our choices purposefully limit waste generation by conserving most of the existing structure and introducing new technology etfe inflated air membranes, resulting in a low carbon footprint for this building upgrade and a rapid offsetting thanks to extensive energy saving in daily operation.

 

midtown avenues are subject to many extremes. canyon effects make them freeze in the winter whereas urban heat effect turns them into an oven almost any day of the summer. both weather conditions result in extreme energy consumption for many buildings. midtown is also extreme for by-passers and workers. all year long, sirens, car horns, and low vegetation index increase their stress level.

our proposal aims at buffering these extremes, for humans and for the environment. we upscaled the concept of the double-skin facade to the entire volume, creating a vegetated interface atmosphere. the new space “in-between” favors social interaction, offers a retreat from the street over-stimulation, and prevents the building envelope from extreme weather solicitations.

emerging from amidst the commercial buildings of the nomad, 63 madison avenue is imposing and evidently distinctive. the first thing one would notice approaching the edifice is the building’s colossal brute concrete facade and piers. our design exists within the space between the current building envelope and newly offsetted volumes carved out of the current slab. the project explores the space between the technical layers of a performance skin.

© 2020 by re-a.d, all rights reserved