New York, USA
Rafael Viñoly Architects
14,864 m2 (160,000 ft2)
Building Envelope Consultant
The new laboratory building at Rockefeller University, one of the foremost biomedical research institutions in the world, will project over FDR Drive on the east side of Manhattan and serve as a highly collaborative facility supporting modern research.
The new 160,000 ft2 laboratory building extending over FDR Drive will maintain a low building profile to protect and enhance the views of the campus from Manhattan and the East River. The facility will provide new connections to existing laboratory buildings and infrastructure. It will also incorporate maximum flexibility for changes in the layouts of the spaces, horizontal connectivity to improve communication between programs, lounges, informal congregation areas, seminar rooms, general food and beverage spaces, and a green roof over the new two-storey laboratory that will be integrated into the landscape.
Challenge: The footprint of the new laboratory building is directly above the bustling FDR expressway. Since this expressway is integral to commuters it could not be closed down to allow for construction.
Solution: Our team developed a building envelope solution that can be assembled on the structural frame of the building and is being constructed off-site, transported by barge to the site, and lifted into place above the FDR expressway. Careful consideration was given to the weight of each module as they will be transported to the site and lifted into place by cranes from barges on the East River. The strategy is to have the modules as staging areas for the remainder of the work to progress without disruption to the expressway below.