WEWORK // MIXED USE LEED BUILDING NYC
In collaboration with WeWork and Kushner Companies, our addition to East 14th street is the Leed alternative to New York’s Silicon Alley’s buildings. The building with its striking stacked programmatic volumes creates an urban object with its own identity, providing ample outdoor space on higher floors, and an innovative fractal glass façade pattern, that allows for natural ventilation. To harness the sector’s success, we propose a LEED-Gold certified building that combines retail and community space with WeWork’s office spaces for small and mid-sized businesses.
In 2016, 5,900 co-working operations dotted the globe, compared with just 300 five years prior. This market is exploding according to Deskmag.com, a site dedicated to tracking co-working trends. Our proposal creates an innovative answer to WeWork’s mission (and ultimately that of Silicon Alley) in the form of an energy efficient and healthy working environment with a strong branding aspect.
STACKED BUILDING VOLUMES
Facing a prominent retail corridor at Union Square, the building provides a significant commercial component with 2 interlocking duplex retail spaces that activate the streetscape and integrate the building within the urban fabric. The main lobby is lit by a triple-height oblique cut through the building providing a visual connection between the retail spaces and the shared community / education areas above. These 3rd, 4th, and 5th floors integrate educational-based activities for diverse populations, with a focus on technology and the creative economy. Shared by a University Hub operated by WeWork and the Flatiron School, these spaces provide visitors and inhabitants with public wifi, flexible work and meeting spaces, and lounges.
The building’s upper levels provide co-working spaces with meeting areas in the triple-height interior gardens with access to exterior terraces. The building incorporates structural and material innovations, and energy-efficient systems. The North orientation of the main fractal glass facade minimizes solar gain, and allows for natural ventilation.
The green lobbies provide ample shade and air movement through public indoor spaces year-round, which optimizes the building’s energy efficiency. Other, more specific, energy strategies include the use of photovoltaics and fiber-optics to light corridors and other internal spaces that require diffuse light, the use of LED lighting, sensors, and hot water supply through rooftop vacuum tube solar panels.
In mathematics, a fractal is a self-similar subset of Euclidean space whose fractal dimension strictly exceeds its topological dimension.
Material Ecology describes the important relations between products, buildings, systems, and their environment, that is facilitated by computation, file to factory fabrication, and the use of up-cyled or renewable materials. Above the fractal glass [self-similar across different scales] and steel diagrid façade we find a series of stacked Penthouse volumes clad in durable Trespa panels, a rain screen system, designed with EBC technology, that drastically reduce maintenance and improving the building’s life cycle assessment. The glass diagrid acts as a performative architectural element that draws people to the site and reflects the density of inhabitants within the building and the amount of data being processed. Company logos can play within the LED lighting and create a lively interactive facade to East 14th Street.