712 Fifth Avenue
Henri BendelNew York, NY, USA The Taubman Companies Schuman Lichtenstein Claman Efron Heritage + Historic, Office, Repositioning + Transformation 472,000 ft2 / 43,850 m2 New York Association of Consulting Engineers (NYCE) First Prize for Engineering Excellence (1991)
Set back 50 feet from the street to assure visual autonomy with adjacent landmark structures in this historic district, this mixed-use building is located on one of Fifth Avenueï¿½s best preserved blockfronts. With faï¿½ades dating back to the turn of the century, 712 Fifth Avenue presented a particular challenge in the need to preserve the existing character of the structure while building on top of it 52 stories to maximize the zoning potential of the site. A new faï¿½ade was built next to the historic faï¿½ades to be compatible with the historic character of the blockfront while also filling the gap in the streetwall.
The building is clad in Indiana Limestone and white Vermont marble, with bronze medallions, polished black granite, and thermal green granite accents. Light and shadow are manipulated with deep recesses on the shaft and crown, providing depth to the walls and liberating the top plaque from the corners. The base is connected to a public atrium, where Renï¿½ Lalique architectural glass panels, incorporated into a retail store, are housed in the landmark Rizzoli and Coty buildings.