VIA 57 West

VIA 57 West (marketed as VIΛ 57WEST) is the name of a residential building designed by the Danish architecture firm Bjarke Ingels Group (BIG). The pyramid shaped tower block or 'tetrahedron' rises 467 ft (142 m) and 35 stories tall and is located on West 57th Street in Hell's Kitchen, Manhattan, New York City. According to The New York Times, the name was chosen 'because the southbound West Side Highway slopes down as drivers enter the city, right at the spot where the building is situated', serving as an entrance to Manhattan 'via 57th'.Bjarke Ingels met the New York developer Douglas Durst in the early 2000s when he was in Denmark. Durst, who visited Ingels' Copenhagen studio in February 2010, found him very inventive, noting that unlike other architects, 'What was striking about his work was that each design was so different, and designed for the locale.' In spring 2010, Durst Fetner Residential commissioned BIG to bring a new residential typology to Manhattan. In 2011, BIG opened an office in New York to supervise W57's development and construction. By mid-2012, the office had a staff of about 50, and as of 2015, it employs over 150 people in New York. West 57 is Ingels's first New York project. The 709-unit building resembles a distorted pyramid with a steeply sloped facade, rising 467 feet (142 m) toward the northeast. The triangular structure has been described as a hybrid between a European perimeter block and a traditional Manhattan high-rise. With its angular balconies around an integrated green plaza, the block will connect with the waterfront and the Hudson River Park, taking full account of the surroundings while providing fine views with little traffic noise. The building has a floor area of 80,000 square metres, including residential and retail programming. The northern façade of the building features a number of balconies skewed at a 45-degree angle, a pattern employed in previous works such as the VM Houses, in the Ørestad section of Copenhagen.

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