Grimshaw unveils Manhattan project
Grimshaw Architects has revealed designs for two Manhattan city “superblocks” as part of New York University’s city-wide development programme.
The NYU 2031 project will provide a framework for the university’s development activity in the next 20 years.
Grimshaw, which was appointed to the job in spring 2007, is working with landscape architect Michael Van Valkenburgh, the designer behind the new grounds of the St Louis Arch in Missouri.
Also on the team are associate designer Toshiko Mori and Arup working on systems and structural feasibility.
The university’s core development area comprises seven blocks around Washington Square Park. The latest designs relate to two areas to the south of the park that will be redeveloped with up to 230,000sq m of residential, commercial and retail property and 1.2ha of public space.
Nikolas Dando-Haenisch, associate principal at Grimshaw, said: “Existing modernist superblocks provide the opportunity to develop a new urban design response to the now historic ‘tower-in-the-park’ typology. We have sought to strike a balance between the development goals and the need for a range of differentiated and legible public spaces.”
Washington Square Village is the northernmost of the two blocks and is lined with residential buildings. Two new academic boomerang-shaped buildings are proposed at the east and west ends of the block.
The University Village south block currently contains three residential towers and a sports centre. A building is planned to replace the sports centre, containing academic and athletic facilities, a supermarket and a university-affiliated hotel. A fourth residential tower is also planned, but has been redesigned after a 40-storey tower by IM Pei was criticised by locals when it was published last year.