Urban Habitat - District/Master Plan Scale Award of Excellence: Hudson Yards - Eastern Yards, New York City
Kohn Pedersen Fox Associates, New York City
A New Megadevelopment with Mega Energy Savings
Once an uninhabitable railyard on the west side of Manhattan, new residents and visitors to Hudson Yards can today explore six skyscrapers, a 5-acre (2-hectare) plaza, and a retail shopping center. The most notable feature of the project is the interactive landmark “Vessel,” a 16-story, honeycomb-like structure consisting of 154 flights of stairs that visitors can climb.|
Within this development, green building materials, clean energy systems, rainwater collection, and connections to mass transit are emphasized. Built on a microgrid and making use of two co-generation plants, 25,000 metric tons of carbon-dioxide equivalent (CO2e) in greenhouse gases are saved from being emitted annually (equal to the emissions of 2,200 American homes or 5,100 cars). Stormwater is collected from building roofs and public spaces and stored in a 64,000-gallon (242,000-liter) tank. The water is reused in mechanical and irrigation systems to conserve drinking water, reducing stress on the sewer system. This process saves 6.5 megawatt-hours of energy and offsets 5 metric tons of carbon dioxide annually.
The project’s hardscape utilizes approximately 83,500 square feet (7,800 square meters) of 4-by-16-inch (10-by-41-centimeter) granite pavers, all of which radiate out from the center of the plaza. To break up the scale of the plaza, the paving is graduated through a series of color blends, from darkest at the periphery, to light, and then dark again at the base of the Vessel. Making up the neighborhood’s softscape, the garden features 225 trees in total. Canopy trees evoke a mixed hardwood forest, and were selected for their seasonal changes in color, their sun and shade tolerance, and their ability to withstand difficult urban conditions.