General How do you design an office building in Greenwich Village? Traditionally a small-scaled, residential, and informal part of New York City, the Village is now evolving into a hub for education, technology, and communications enterprises. Is it possible to create a new type of workplace environment that provides the spaces and infrastructure to support emerging businesses while maintaining, and celebrating, the personality of the neighborhood? 799 Broadway answers these questions by creating a new paradigm for workplace environments in New York. Light-filled, human-scaled, and technology-focused, the 12-story, 160,000sf building occupies a unique location on Broadway just south of Union Square; sited across from the lush courtyard of Grace Church, the design celebrates the special moment where Broadway first bends away from the north/south axis. Working within zoning parameters, the building becomes a rhythmic cascade of interlocking forms that limit continuous vertical walls to two stories, creating a sensitive yet memorable response to the transitional scale of the neighborhood. A simple palette of white metal panels, clear glass windows and wood soffits echoes the classic iron-cast building across 11th Street, while referencing on the white limestone of the iconic Grace Church across Broadway. These materials are woven together to unify the glazed volumes and create an integrated vertical expression. The open, flexible interior spaces connect on almost every level with generous, functional landscaped terraces that bring nature inside and extend the workplace outdoors. Interiors feature exposed cast-in-place concrete structure and ceilings, reinventing and modernizing the traditional New York City loft with efficient mechanical systems and column-free spaces. UV light sanitation and bipolar ionization systems enable 799 Broadway to exceed the highest standards of indoor air quality and air purification. Pursuing LEED gold certification, the building was designed to meet the rigorous health and wellness criteria of the WELL Building certification program, which verifies that the building has followed best practices for facility operations and management to reduce the risk of contracting COVID-19 and other viruses. 799 Broadway has been awarded a coveted Fitwel® 2-Star Rating for its incorporation of evidence-based design and operations strategies to support the physical, mental, and social health of occupants. Located on Broadway, the main lobby offers clear sightlines to a shared courtyard that serves as a unique focus for social and business activities. The courtyard doubles as the outdoor component of a tenant lounge on the lower level, where many of the building’s amenities are housed, including a gym with a locker room, showers, and ample bike storage. Retail frontage along Broadway further integrates the building into its vibrant surroundings, while on the rooftop, a terrace boasts views of the East River, TriBeCa, One World Trade and the Hudson River. Confirmed tenants for 799 Broadway include a coveted roster of tech and financial tenants, including Wellington Management, Bain Capital, and global music streaming platform Tidal. 799 Broadway - Technical The space created for this client is a boutique office building that targets tech/advertising/ media/information (TAMI) tenants intends to meet the desire for open, flexible, raw space not readily available in existing or conventional Manhattan real estate offerings. The design responds to the scale and materiality of its surroundings including the unique kink in the building’s corner axis as it angles away from the landmarked courtyard space directly opposite the site. Incorporating outdoor terraces throughout the design is an acknowledgement of this context while functioning as useful extensions of the workplace and valuable views from the interior workspaces. Volumetrically dynamic yet materially respectful, the building is appropriately designed with both the TAMI tenant and the historical fabric of the surrounding neighborhood in mind. The white aluminum panels with articulated vertical mullions relate directly to the white cast-iron façade to the north across the street. The building features an exposed concrete structural system, 15’ floor to floor heights and a wide column grid (sometimes as large as 36’x44’) based not on perimeter office modules but on interior benching dimensions. Tenants share use of a landscaped, communal roof terrace, ground floor garden courtyard/ amenity space, fitness center, and bike storage.
Perkins&Will, an interdisciplinary, research-based architecture and design firm, was founded in 1935 on the belief that design has the power to transform lives. Guided by its core values—design excellence, diversity and inclusion, living design, research, resilience, social purpose, sustainability, and well-being—the firm is committed to designing a better, more beautiful world. Fast Company has named Perkins&Will one of the World’s Most Innovative Companies in Architecture three times, and in 2021, it added the firm to its list of Brands That With an international team of more than 2,000 professionals, the firm has over 20 studios worldwide, providing integrated services in architecture, interior design, branded environments, urban design, and landscape architecture. Industry rankings consistently place the firm among the world’s top design practices.
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