USGBC+: Best of LEED

Press 02.01.2015
Read time:   medium  

Calvin Hennick – USGBC+

In the country’s densest market, green design is helping to connect the built environment with the great outdoors. New York City has some of the best parks in the country, but that’s not the only reason residents flock to them. Without the occasional trip to the Jacqueline Kennedy Onassis Reservoir or the Brooklyn Botanic Garden, many New Yorkers’ worlds would consist of nothing but steel and concrete.

“It can be claustrophobic,” says Pam Campbell, a senior associate at COOKFOX Architects. “It’s hard to find a space that’s not full of people, not full of cars, not full of noise. In a city like this, people can spend months without walking in some grass or amongst some trees, or seeing some wildlife, and that disconnect is very problematic. How can people even begin to care about things like biodiversity if they haven’t experienced it?”

The architects at COOKFOX try to create designs that bring a bit of the natural world into the buildings New Yorkers inhabit. A prime example is the firm’s design for the LEED Platinum Bank of America Tower at One Bryant Park, completed in 2009. A bamboo canopy at the building’s entrance extends into the lobby, establishing a connection between the indoor and outdoor space. Inside, the Urban Garden Room gives visitors a place to sit and relax in an almost-outside environment.

Read more in the full article, Best of LEED, here.