Brookfield Office Properties Inc. last week broke ground on the new glass pavilion on West Street at the World Financial Center.
Guests included Pelli Clarke Pelli partner Rafael Pelli, whose father Cesar was the original architect of the complex, and Gayle Horwitz, president and CEO of Battery Park City Authority, along with project consultants and contractors.
The pavilion will serve as the complex’s new front door, welcoming workers, visitors and residents as they emerge from (and enter into) the Fulton Street and World Trade Center Transit Hubs.
The pavilion will be the western terminus of the highly anticipated east-west underground pedestrian passageway in Lower Manhattan that spans one-half mile.
“Brookfield is proud to take another step forward in reshaping the World Financial Center as the area’s premier working, dining, shopping and entertainment destination,” said Mitch Rudin, president and chief executive officer of Brookfield Office Properties’ U.S. Commercial Operations division.
“The World Financial Center’s stunning new front door on West Street will provide workers, visitors and residents with a comfortable and seamless connection to all subways and the other vibrant areas of Lower Manhattan.”
“The World Financial Center is the dynamic commercial core of Battery Park City, which has been a symbol of towering strength during the best and worst times of New York City’s recent history,” said Horwitz.
“The new glass pavilion is another example of Brookfield Office Properties’ commitment to enhance the quality of life for the thousands of people who live, work, visit and study here.”
The new pavilion was conceptualized by Rafael Pelli. The original structural engineer, Thornton Tomasetti, and the original mechanical, electrical and plumbing engineers Flack + Kurtz are also working on the pavilion project.
Plaza Construction, a New York-based construction management firm, is the general contractor. Subcontractors include Urban Foundation Engineering, Permasteelisa, Metropolitan Walters LLC, Mueser Rutledge Consulting Engineers and Liberty Contracting. The Spector Group is the architect of record on the project.
“The new entry pavilion has been a very special design commission, both because it creates a new front door for this urban complex to the city and because it repairs and reconnects to the city one of my father’s most important projects,” said Rafael Pelli, partner at Pelli Clarke Pelli.
“The design complements the wonderful design of the original, with feature elements that advances in technology and engineering have allowed.”
The pavilion, which is curved glass on three sides as well as the roof, will sit adjacent to the Winter Garden stairs and will surround the escalators leading to the World Trade Center underground connection. The structure will be 55 feet high and 113 feet wide and features an energy efficient heating and cooling system. Construction on the pavilion will be completed by Fall 2013.
Brookfield is undertaking a $250-million renovation of the World Financial Center to meet the needs of the changing Lower Manhattan: a new center for, dining, entertainment, and a diverse workforce beyond financial services, including media, technology, professional services and more.
Construction has also started on the World Financial Center’s dining terrace with six restaurants and a European-style marketplace.
The third phase of the project – to kick off later this year – will introduce luxury local and international retailers in the Courtyard area of the complex.