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Foster scoops prize New York tower

[First look] Norman Foster has beaten Zaha Hadid, Richard Rogers and Rem Koolhaas’ OMA to win a prestigious skyscraper project in New York

The Pritzker Prize winner’s studio Foster + Partners was announced the winner of the 60,400m² project today (3 October). The high-profile four-strong shortlist was chosen following an invited competition with nine entries.

The 425 Park Avenue development for L&L Holding and Lehman Brothers Holdings is thought to be the first ‘full-block’ office scheme on the street in nearly half a century. 

Close to the iconic Seagram Building and Lever House, the proposal features a tapered steel-frame tower rising to meet three illuminated shear walls.

Norman Foster said: ‘I have a personal connection with New York, which has been a source of inspiration since my time at Yale, when the new towers on Park Avenue and its neighbourhoods were a magnet for every young architect.

‘Seeing first-hand the works of Mies van der Rohe, Gordon Bunshaft, Eero Saarinen and Philip Johnson was tremendously exciting then – I am delighted to have this very special opportunity to design a contemporary tower to stand alongside them.’

He added: ‘Our aim is to create an exceptional building, both of its time and timeless, as well as being respectful of this context – a tower that is for the city and for the people that will work in it, setting a new standard for office design and providing an enduring landmark that befits its world-famous location.’

Foster’s conceptual design will be developed in collaboration with L&L Holding’s project team to create a fully formed architectural and construction plan for the building – according to a statement from the developer.

L&L Holding chair and chief executive David Levinson said: ‘We are grateful to each of the firms for the thoughtfulness and creativity they demonstrated throughout the process. There is no doubt that each group was fully capable of helping us realize our vision of a 425 Park Avenue tower that redefines the modern office environment while also respecting and enhancing the timeless allure of the Plaza district.’

He added: ‘We are looking forward to beginning a process in which we translate Foster’s brilliant concept into a modern tower which offers its inhabitants the most functional and environmentally-sustainable work environment imaginable while also addressing the public realm in a way that hasn’t been accomplished in many years.’

Construction is planned to commence in 2015 and complete by the end of 2017.

  • Image by dbox branding and creative for F+P

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