Monday LEEDoff: Goldman Sachs’ Gold Headquarters in Battery Park City

Goldman Sachs broke ground on its new 740-foot, 42-story headquarters building- which will stand on the last available commercial development site in Battery Park City, just to the north of Cesar Pelli’s American Express Building along West Street between Vesey and Murray Streets- back in late 2005. Originally planned for occupancy in 2009, the project [...]

Goldman Sachs broke ground on its new 740-foot, 42-story headquarters building- which will stand on the last available commercial development site in Battery Park City, just to the north of Cesar Pelli’s American Express Building along West Street between Vesey and Murray Streets- back in late 2005. Originally planned for occupancy in 2009, the project is now likely to wrap up in 2010; construction on the tower is currently twelve stories of steel out of the ground. The project team includes architects Pei Cobb Freed & Partners (design by Henry N. Cobb), structural engineers Yolles Partnership Inc., MEP engineers Cosentini Associates, and construction manager Tishman.

While Goldman was able to avoid much of the legal wrangling and bureaucratic red tape that’s plagued Larry Silverstein at the actual Ground Zero site, its green plans for the new headquarters have similarly escaped the public eye that’s remained cast upon the Freedom Tower; the investment bank is aiming for a LEED Gold rating. Specific green features do not appear available yet, and design details about the entire project itself have been extremely sparse to date. Nevertheless, I’ll continue to keep a keen eye on Ground Zero- the significant concentration of green construction taking place in this incredibly high-profile location is critical to the long-term success of sustainable design- and even LEED itself- here in New York City.

The Freedom Tower (David Childs/SOM) and 200, 175, and 150 Greenwich Street (Foster, Rogers, and Maki, respectively), will each seek LEED Gold (or perhaps a comparable rating under USGBC’s next-generation LEED system), and J.P. Morgan’s new headquarters at the former site of the Deutsche Bank Building will aim for a Platinum rating. Moreover, once the Goldman Sachs Tower opens, its two million square feet, coupled with the two million square feet of LEED Gold residential space across Battery Park City, will “make Lower Manhattan the world leader with the highest concentration of sustainable construction per square foot,” according to Battery Park City Authority Chairman James Gill. The former site of the World Trade Center is poised to become a major centerpiece for Gotham’s green building efforts, and it’s truly fantastic to see such positive things happening at a place where tragedy and sorrow have reigned for far too long.

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