Photo: The Durst Organization
North America's first-ever LEED Platinum skyscraper sits at one of the most desirable addresses in New York City: One Bryant Park. With a stunning view of the park's beautiful and storied great lawn (which was once used for military drills during the Civil War), the skyscraper looks anything but antique: its glass facade and asymetrical angles tower above the surrounding buildings like a cut of blue ice.
Urban Green members learned that ice also sat at the heart of One Bryant Park during an exclusive tour of the building's facilities by its lead architect, Urban Green Chair Emeritus Bob Fox of COOKFOX Architects. With support from One Bryant Park's Chief Engineer, Dan Monahan, members got a look at a range of the systems that keep the building running smoothly and sustainably.
Forty-four ice storage tanks accumulate ice overnight during off-peak hours to cool the building throughout the day. Over 750 tons of ice can cool the building for up to ten hours.
Unlike most basements, One Bryant Park's mechanical room is spotless. Fox and Monahan described it as "the heart of the building."
An information panel displays key operations data in real time, including the building's cogeneration, water condenser, ice water, and primary, secondary and theater chilled-water systems.
Multicolored chillers do more than look good: One Bryant Park uses different-sized chillers to match heating to cooling loads.
At the far end of the building, tour members took in the view from inside the offices of the building's owners, The Durst Organization.
Other building features include bamboo roofs, a rooftop garden available for composting scraps from the building's cafeterias, and, as the first high-rise built after 9/11, extra wide staircases for safe evacuation in an emergency.