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In the early to mid-20th century, the massive St. John’s Terminal was the terminus of the New York Central Railroad’s West Side viaduct. As the neighborhood has evolved from its industrial past, we are now reimagining this historical infrastructure into the next generation of high-performance biophilic workplace.
We will restore the southern portion of the terminal, cut below Houston Street to expose the rail beds and celebrate the railroad’s history. Highlighting this large-scale historical infrastructure so crucial to the city’s development grounds the building in history and place while providing a base from which to build a contemporary biophilic workplace. The rail beds, revealed in the cut façade as if in a section drawing, will be landscaped, visually connecting pedestrians and occupants to nature and enhancing the newly opened streetscape. Nine new floors will rise above, inspired by the neighborhood’s powerful working buildings.
Equivalent to two city blocks, the site offers tremendous opportunity to enhance the West Village, SoHo and Hudson Square’s connection to the waterfront. A new public garden to the north and garden alley to the south will bookend the building, creating direct, welcoming pathways to Hudson River Park and extending the public green space across West Street and into the neighborhood. The design encourages bicycle commuting, tying the workplace to a healthier and more sustainable commuter infrastructure through a large bicycle parking facility and a front door experience from the Hudson River Greenway.
We designed the building to prioritize occupant health and well-being through biophilic design. Daylit interiors will provide panoramic views of the city and the Hudson River. Blurring the boundaries between indoor and out, planted terraces wrapping three floors will create direct connections to nature and seasonal cycles. The work spaces will include highly filtered outside air and biodynamic lighting, and rainwater catchment, thermal storage and use of Zone Green will enhance the building’s sustainability.
COOKFOX Project Team
Miha Brezavšcek / Rick Cook / May Dussadeevutikul / Nathaniel Felder / Alexandra Lima / Marguerite Lefevre / Deric Mizokami / Mark Rusitzky / Fayad Shahim / Brandon Specketer / Giacomo Vischi / Hanxing Zu