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Concrete towers over New York City

New precast concrete apartment tower set to open in the Big Apple in 2017

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The Bryant is a new 37-storey tower in midtown Manhattan in New York City that is designed by British architect David Chipperfield and set to open to public in the latter half of 2017. Rising on a site across from Bryant Park, the tower will have a grid-like facade clad in precast concrete terrazzo panels, speckled with marble and sandstone chips. The building’s structural frame will also be made of concrete.

Chipperfield elaborated on the design in an interview with Dezeen: “In all of our work we try to find a way by which buildings have a strong physical presence. In the case of The Bryant, we've used facade elements of terrazzo. The nice thing about precast concrete and terrazzo, is that they are visible constructed elements.”

Much of the building’s final design was based on making sure that the building would be commercially viable and architecturally interesting. In order to achieve this, the building was given a polished concrete frame. Using a custom-made mixture, Chipperfield placed a concrete grid along the building’s perimeter. More that just a facade, the concrete grids define both the building’s interior and exterior. “We are sitting in a sea of glass-clad buildings,” he says. “There’s a danger that architecture loses its substance, so what we did here is to use this concrete cladding that comes into the building.”

“The idea that the structure and the facade are the same thing, made out of this polished concrete, I think will give the building a sort of tectonic and physical presence. Somehow you've reduced the building down to elements of columns and windows, of solid and void, of mass and space.”

Chipperfield describes his approach to design as “incredibly simple and very primary”. “I think you can make architecture out of very simple things,” he says. “You don't have to be complicated.”

Chipperfield’s firm was founded in 1985 and has offices in London, Berlin, Milan and Shanghai.

Image via www.thebryantnyc.com

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