New York: The City Rebuilds, Redefined and Reimagined
New York City: 2001 - 2011 | The City Rebuilds | The City Redefined | The City Reimagined
Photo © Alexander Severin/Razummedia; courtesy Two Trees Management Co. LLC

Mercedes House

TEN Arquitectos

New York, NY
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Completion Date: Mercedes–Benz Showroom and Phase I, May 2011

Owner: Two Trees Management Co. LLC

Program: A 31-story, 1.3-million-square-foot mixed-use development spanning more than half a city block between 11th and 10th avenues in Midtown Manhattan. Of an eventual 865 rental and condo units, 220 are completed (20 percent of the total count is reserved for inclusionary housing). One residential lobby, decorated by Leeser Architecture, is also finished. A 55,000-square-foot Mercedes-Benz showroom outfitted by Spector Group anchors the ground floor, with 275,000 square feet of Mercedes service floors below grade. The remainder of the residences, another residential lobby, a 28,000-square-foot health club, and two courtyards will be completed in the summer of 2012.

Design concept and solution: With this large, elongated building, the architects wanted to reconcile the different scales of nearby structures—from the low side-street buildings near 11th Avenue to a tall telephone-switching tower midblock—while creating a continuous span of green space and views to the Hudson. Like a giant Z-shaped staircase, the building consists of a compact mass on its western side and a 31-story tower to the east; the two ends are connected by a narrow, curving cascade of apartments covered with green roofs. Each level is higher than the last, so that one apartment's green roof is the upstairs neighbor's patio and every story overlooks the Hudson. At the base, two elevated courtyards are carved into each side of the "stairs," resulting in a cutout effect that reduces the building's mass along the smaller side streets. The facades that meet the street edge are aluminum-composite-panel rain screens. For the more private facades that overlook the courtyards, the architects used a hybrid curtain wall with occasional sun louvers.

Total construction cost:
$450 million

New York, NY

TEN Arquitectos
155 5th Avenue, 3rd Floor
New York, NY 10010

September 2011
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