505 Fifth Avenue
CIT GroupNew York, NY, USA Fifth & 42nd LLC Office 298,000 ft2 / 28,000 m2 MIPIM Awards - Business Center Category Finalist (2007); New York Construction Awards - Best Office Project (2005)
Located at the northeast corner of Fifth Avenue and 42nd Street, 505 Fifth Avenue is sited on one of the most prominent intersections in New York City. The 26-story, glass-clad tower, with 258,000 square feet (24,000 square meters) of prime office space and 20,000 square feet (2,000 square meters) of retail, offers occupants views of the New York Public Library and Bryant Park.
Unlike most office towers in the city, where steel construction is the norm, 505 Fifth Avenue has a cast-in-place, reinforced concrete structure that provides a level of building safety exceeding New York City Building Code requirements. The floor-plate size and the 45-foot depth from the core to the wall allow for a reduced number of columns and a 15-foot cantilever above the podium, eliminating the need for perimeter columns.
The design creates the opportunity for an uninterrupted, highly transparent glass skin through the use of a side-loaded core, which is located at the northeast corner of the site and concrete flat slab construction, allowing for a finished ceiling height of 11 feet (3.5 meters) at the perimeter. The form of the building organizes the mass as a collection of pieces that relate in scale to the surrounding fabric. The curtain wall system weaves together the distinct characteristics of the tower’s midtown Manhattan milieu. The façade on 42nd Street is planar, while the one on Fifth Avenue is angular. A single curtain-wall type joins these two expressions.
The building’s entrance lobby, which opens onto 42nd Street, was designed in collaboration with artist James Turrell. The dynamic design turns the space into a three-dimensional light sculpture that continuously transforms itself over the course of the day. Together, the sublime quality of the light and the frenetic nature of 42nd Street create a diptych that is as specific to the site as the building is to its context. Turrell also designed the building’s exterior lighting concepts, creating a beacon on the Midtown skyline.