On East 54th Street, “Art of American Building” Earns LEED-EB Gold

The Edward Larrabee Barnes-designed 535 Madison Avenue has earned a LEED-EB Gold rating after a recent $5 million retrofit program that included renovations to its lobby, elevators, and outdoor plaza.

535 Madison Avenue - Lobby

At the northeast corner of East 54th Street, 535 Madison Avenue has earned a Gold rating from USGBC under the LEED for Existing Buildings (Version 3.0) rating system. Owned and managed by the Park Tower Group, the 37-story tower was originally designed by the renowned Modernist architect Edward Larrabee Barnes (I.B.M. Building just to the north) and built in 1983.

In 2008, the Park Tower Group invested $5 million to upgrade a variety of 535 Madison’s building systems, which also supported its LEED-EB application led by CodeGreen Solutions. Specifically, it:

- implemented a building-wide recycling and green cleaning program;
- installed low-flow plumbing fixtures;
- installed a heat exchanger to reuse waste steam condensate as a heating source for the building’s lower floors; and
- introduced a Demand Response electricity load-shedding program to reduce energy consumption during peak hours.

Park Tower Group calls 535 Madison Avenue “the Art of American Building;” its lobby, elevators and plaza were also redesigned by architects Deborah Berke & Partners in connection with the 2008 renovation. The lobby features a wall of white onyx; elevator lobbies and cabs are clad in staved walnut with bronze detailing.  Permanent artworks in the lobby include Le Saturnien by Jean Dubuffet (1971) and Le Cirque by Fernand Leger (1954); the auction house Christie’s rotates pieces through an outdoor plaza.

The 500,000-square-foot tower was built with concrete and is clad with an insulated, aluminum panel curtain wall featuring tinted, insulated glass. Individual tenant floors are 12 feet from slab to ceiling; a new state-of-the-art building management system controls HVAC delivery.

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