MetLife Façade Design Competition

February 27, 2016 [Woodbury, NY] ∼

This past month, our Architecture Department took part in an open competition to reimagine the façade of NYC's MetLife Building at 200 Park Ave. Sponsored by Metals in Construction, this competition challenged the participants to propose a sound design which would improve both the aesthetic quality of the building, as well as improve the environmental performance of this aging structure to meet the increased demands of the NYC's Architecture 2030 Challenge.

Our Solution
Our proposal called for a re-cladding of the existing façade, replacing the single layer glazing with a high performance triple pane curtain wall system. As the prominent architectural feature, our design team proposed a system of perforated steel panels which would improve the building performance by reflecting a large portion of the incoming sunlight, thereby reducing the solar gain experienced by the building.

The perforated metal screen underwent a series of design iterations. The design evolved to maximize its light screening capabilities, while still allowing for adequate sight lines from each floor of the building. The pyramidal shape of the panels helped to create striking patterns of light and shadow as the sun moves across the surface throughout the day. We designed the system with feasibility of construction in mind, optimizing the shape and size to allow for relatively simple manufacture and installation. The strong horizontal banding is carried on through the panel design, yet our system lends a new, lightweight feel to an otherwise imposing concrete structure.