VIA 57 WEST, New York, USA


published in l'Arca International n. 136


VIA 57 WEST, New York, USA, project : BIG-Bjarke Ingels Group



Project:  BIG-Bjarke Ingels Group; Partners in Charge: Bjarke Ingels, Thomas Christoffersen, Beat Schenk; Project Architect: David Brown, Team: Aleksander Tokarz, Alessandro Ronfini, Alessio Valmori, Alvaro Mendive, Benjamin Schulte, Birk Daugaard, Celine Jeanne, Christoffer Gotfredsen, Daniel Sundlin, Dominyka Mineikyte, Eivor Davidsen, Felicia Guldberg, Florian Oberschneider, Gabrielle Nadeau, Gül Ertekin, Ho Kyung Lee, Hongyi Jin, Julian Liang, Julianne Gola, Laura Youf, Lucian Racovitan, Marcella Martinez, Maria Nikolova, Maya Shopova, Mitesh Dixit, Nicklas A. Rasch, Ola Hariri, Riccardo Mariano, Steffan Heath, Stanley Lung, Tara Hagan, Thilani Rajarathna, Tyler Polich, Valentina Mele, Valerie Lechene, Xu Li, Yi Li; Collaborators: SLCE Architects, Starr Whitehouse, Thornton Tomasetti, Dagher Engineering, Langan Engineering, Hunter Roberts,Enclos, Philip Habib & Assoc, Vidaris Inc, Nancy Packes, Van Deusen & Assoc, Cerami & Assoc, CPP, AKRF, Glessner Group, Brandston Partnership Inc; Project Leader Interiors: David Brown, Project Manager Interiors: Beat Schenk; Team Interiors: Aaron Hales, Alessandro Ronfini, Brian Foster, Christoffer Gotfredsen, Ho Kyung Lee, Hongyi Jin, Ivy Hume, Jenny Chang, Lauren Turner, Mina Rafiee, Rakel Karlsdottir, Tara Hagan, Thomas Fagan, Tiago Barros, Valentina Mele; Client: The Durst Organization



VIA 57 West is a hybrid between the European perimeter block and a traditional Manhattan high-rise, combining the advantages of both: the compactness and efficiency of a courtyard building with the airiness and the expansive views of a skyscraper.



By keeping three corners of the block low and lifting the north-east corner up towards its 142 m peak, the courtyard opens views towards the Hudson River, bringing low western sun deep into the block and graciously preserving the adjacent Helena Tower’s views of the river.



The form of the building shifts depending on the viewer’s vantage point. While appearing like a pyramid from the West-Side-Highway, it turns into a dramatic glass spire from West 58th Street. Bjarke Ingels, in an interview with Dezeen, described the structure as a “courtscraper”.



The courtyard  – designed to provide river views for as many residents as possible – is inspired by the classic Copenhagen urban oasis and can be seen from the street so to extend the adjacent greenery of the Hudson River Park into VIA . The slope of the building allows for a transition in scale between the low-rise structures to the south and the high-rise residential towers to the north and west of the site.



The highly visible sloping roof consists of a simple ruled surface perforated by terraces – each one unique and south-facing.



The metal cladding across the front is punctured by openings that act as balconies for the units. The fishbone pattern of the walls is also reflected in its elevations.



Every apartment gets a bay window to amplify the benefits of the generous view and balconies which encourage interaction between residents and passers-by.



Amenities for occupants include, beyond the garden of about 10,000 m2 at the heart of the building, an indoor basketball court, swimming pool, fitness centre and screening room, while 4,180 m2 of retail space is spread across the ground floor. The 87,330 m2 complex offers 709 rental units that range from studios to four-bedroom apartments.