Architect Breaks Down The Evolving Skyscrapers Of New York | Architectural Digest | Summary and Q&A

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March 23, 2023
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Architect Breaks Down The Evolving Skyscrapers Of New York | Architectural Digest

TL;DR

This video analyzes the most common styles of skyscrapers in the New York City skyline, including the iconic Empire State Building, glass curtain wall buildings, urban setback towers, the Seagram Building, the New York Times Building, and the super tall residential towers.

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Key Insights

  • 🫅 The Empire State Building's design elements, such as its setbacks and crown, contribute to its iconic status.
  • 😎 Glass curtain wall buildings became symbolic of corporate America with their all-glass facades and minimalistic designs.
  • 👳 The Seagram Building revolutionized urban zoning laws by introducing alternate setbacks and creating urban plazas.
  • 👰 The New York Times Building combines functional elements, such as the ceramic rod veil, with expressive features, like the revealed structure.
  • 😀 Super tall residential towers have transformed New York City's skyline, but have also faced structural challenges due to their extreme height and slender profiles.

Transcript

hi I'm Michael weister and I've been an architect in New York City for over 35 years today we're going to look at some of the most common styles of skyscrapers that make up the New York City skyline first up the most iconic skyscraper in the world the Empire State Building so what I love about this image is actually the crowns the Empire State Buil... Read More

Questions & Answers

Q: What is unique about the Empire State Building's design?

The Empire State Building stands out for its crown, antenna, stepped pyramid, and stone crown. It also features setbacks, reflecting the zoning laws, and creates a sense of verticality.

Q: How did glass curtain wall buildings become popular in New York?

Glass curtain wall buildings, like the Lever House, were popularized as symbols of corporate America. The all-glass facade, minimalistic design, and the ability to provide panoramic views appealed to corporate entities.

Q: How did the Seagram Building influence urban zoning laws?

The Seagram Building introduced alternate setbacks and urban plazas, which proved successful in letting sunlight penetrate down to the sidewalk. This led to new zoning laws that incentivized the creation of public spaces in skyscrapers.

Q: What sets the New York Times Building apart from other skyscrapers?

The New York Times Building features a ceramic rod veil that reduces solar heat gain. It expresses verticality through a narrowed design, while revealing the structure and incorporating modern design elements.

Summary & Key Takeaways

  • The Empire State Building stands out for its verticality and unique setbacks, reflecting the zoning laws that required tall buildings to step back from the street.

  • Glass curtain wall buildings, like the Lever House, became symbolic of corporate America, with their all-glass facade and minimalistic design.

  • The Seagram Building introduced the concept of alternate setbacks and urban plazas, inspiring new zoning laws that encouraged the creation of public spaces in skyscrapers.

  • The New York Times Building combines a ceramic rod veil, expressive structure, and a modern design, showcasing the newspaper's transition to the digital age.

  • Super tall residential towers, like 432 Park Avenue, have transformed the city's skyline with their extreme height and slender profiles.

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