From the New York Times building, we headed to find an entrance to the High Line but since my friend and I both hadn’t been to Hudson Yards, we decided to stop by along the way and see what all the hype was about.
Honestly, any visit to a skyscraper focused city is a breath of fresh air for me. Whether its Chicago, London or Hong Kong, I love going to a city that is jam packed with skyscrapers- the vertical scale of the building creates such a unique challenge to not only create an experience at human scale, but also from multiple viewpoints across the city.
Okay- to start, this Warner Media building (30 Hudson Yards) had me aghast from a distance. I learned its the second tallest building NYC and geez, that protruding cantilevered exterior balcony at whatever impossible high floor left me speechless. The opposite of the Times building which is quite stoic, this skyscraper shape shifts depending on the view and for its height offers a asymmetry unusual in a building this tall.
As we continued to approach Hudson Yards, my friend kept mentioning the “Vessel”. I mistook this for the “Oculus”, a Calatrava rendition- and having seen a lot of Calatrava’s work in person, I had a very specific expectation in my mind. So needless to say that when we got to the said “Vessel” – my eyebrows raised a little to say the least.
A complete tourist attraction, the building serves it purpose well. Reminding me of the “Bean” in Chicago’s Millennium Park, the “Vessel” creates a great back drop for pictures but is also interactive because you can walk up and, I would imagine, get some pretty great views. What impressed me the most was the bronze material of the building- I wonder if its meant to patina over time, eventually resulting in a color similar to the Statue of Liberty. If its meant to retain its current shine, that’s quite the feat to keep shiny and clean (having heard rumors about the level of effort to keep the “Bean” clean).
There are so many juxtaposing building forms and materials in Hudson Yards. Each building had its own character- every corner I turned I felt there was something new to admire and discover. The Bloomberg building was my favorite in the gradient texture applied to the exterior- the effect draws the eye upward. Again, I was so impressed with the attention to all sides of the building with each view bringing some new detail to light. We stopped into the newly opened Mercado Little Spain which I would highly recommend as a spot to rest weary legs and refuel- we immensely enjoyed the energy in this Spanish focused food hall.
Does Hudson Yards live up to the hype? I think architecturally it definitely does. Whether Hudson Yards can continue to thrive as a destination for both tourists and locals is yet to be seen.
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