Dezeen Magazine

OMA reveals its first residential tower for New York

Dutch firm OMA's New York office, which is headed by Shohei Shigematsu, has proposed an apartment building with a "prismatic" corner for Manhattan.

Planned for a corner plot at 121 East 22nd Street in the Gramercy Park neighbourhood, the building commissioned by Toll Brothers City Living will contain 133 residential units.

The position between a quiet private park and the bustling area of Madison Square led OMA New York to design a building that aims to reflect both.

"The design of the 133-unit residential block was driven by the duality of its context," said OMA partner Shohei Shigematsu, who has headed the firm's New York outpost since 2008.

The form will step back from the street at the height of the neighbouring structures, while windows will follow the historic facades where they line up, but become larger as they get further away.

Where the two street-facing walls of OMA's design meet at the corner, faceted triangles of glass will disrupt the rigid geometry.

"Punched windows echoing the facade of its pre-war neighbours seamlessly transition to contemporary, floor-to-ceiling glazed windows towards the corner, forming a gradient from historic to modern," added Shigematsu.

OMA New York has been operating for a decade, but this project would become the firm's first residential tower in the city.

Its recently completed projects include a monumental installation for an art performance at the Park Avenue Armory and an extension to a museum in Quebec.

As well as the spate of skinny residential skyscrapers rising in New York, a variety of smaller apartment buildings by high-profile architects are also popping up across Manhattan.

Examples include Zaha Hadid's condo building next to the High Line park, Tadao Ando's concrete and glass structure for Nolita and David Chipperfield's tower across from Bryant Park.