Title: The United Nations Financial Nature, Manhattan, NYC - Code: B7Y6T5
Contest: NY / 2012
By: V. Hadjikyriacou

Views: 1901 Likes: 0




The United Nations Financial Nature, Manhattan, NYC

The United Nations Financial Nature, Manhattan, NYC “The world economy is on the brink of another major downturn” (U.N. report on Global Economic Prospects, December 2011) As the world struggles through these tough economic times, governments are drowning in debt while individuals fall into depression as unemployment levelrise, the United Nations organization has offered a hand in re balancing the global economy. The proposed scheme is developed to facilitate the United Nations Department of Economic & Social Affairs (DESA), which addresses the core issues and future actions undertaken on global recession. In essence, the aim is to create an architecture, which responds to the U.N.’s stance on global economic re balance. Due to the current issues and restrictions on reclaiming land from neighbouring sites on Manhattan Island, the proposal is positioned within the boundaries of the existing site, extending vertically downwards preserving the listed status of the existing architecture above. The idea is to create a subterranean environment of functions addressing the financial matters that the U.N is currently dealing with based around an almost covert nature, as questioned in an article by the Global New Journal (2010) “Is the United Nations a Den of Spies?”

At street level, the public can access the site through a controlled secure entrance, aligned with the current “U.N. Way” which runs along 43rd street. Once on the platform, the public flow is controlled by the natural and artificial setbacks created by both the architecture and the vegetation. The platform adopts a grid structure from the adjacent Secretariat building, where parts of the slabs dip down creating small U.N. gallery spaces, consultancy rooms for public investors, dining facilities and
green lungs viewing the subterranean level below.

The subterranean environment below is excavated from the Manhattan Bedrock, creating an underworld of functions accommodating the U.N. Economic & Social Council. A main Assembly Hall, diplomats quarters, currency print rooms, administration offices are all centralised around the main Gold Tower which pierces through the public platform above, creating a link between the two worlds (above&below).The tower accommodates office space for the 54 members of the Council and the Gold Reserve Vault. Enclosed in the central structural spine of the tower are the Gold Reserve Vaults. Gold bullions are stacked vertically through a central service lift. However, the primary function of the Gold Tower is to act as the main light source for the subterranean environment. Daylight is harnessed throughout the course of the day by the means of a central lightwell, this is then reflected down the core and amplified by the Gold Bullion’s high reflectivity. Cavernous void spaces sculpted out from the form allow light to flood into the void space creating a gold aura: acting like a chandelier of light.

The stepped typology and materiality of the subterranean architecture create an openness allowing daylight to flood down into the underground world. In addition, natural elements from above ground conditions, such as vegetation and water, are also present below, supressing feelings of anxiety and isolation and creating an underground environment with qualities of an above ground setting.



Title: The United Nations Financial Nature, Manhattan, NYC

Time: 13 giugno 2012
Category: NY
Views: 1901 Likes: 0

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