Designed in the International Style by architects Skidmore, Owings & Merrill and built in 1960, 1285 Avenue of the Americas was part of Rockefeller Center’s expansion west of Sixth Avenue and originally developed for The Equitable Life Assurance Society of the United States, replacing the company’s predecessor headquarters building in lower Manhattan. After a stint as the Paine Webber Building, the 42-story, 1.7 million-square-foot Class A office tower – which stands between 51st and 52nd Streets – is today the headquarters of UBS, which is by far the tower’s largest tenant at 700,000 square feet.
1285 Avenue of the Americas is also one of the largest office buildings in New York City that has earned LEED certification to date, copping Silver under LEED for Existing Buildings: Version 2.0. The supporting retrofit program reduced the tower’s water consumption by 40 percent and increased daylight penetration to over 50 percent of the building’s square footage. 1285 Avenue of the Americas also obtained 14 out of the available 16 Materials & Resources credits under LEED-EB V2.0.
1285 Avenue of the Americas’ lobby actually doubles as a 4000-square-foot art gallery. Open since 1985, exhibits are curated by non-profit groups working with the space’s directory, Colin Thompson, who focuses on placing art in non-traditional settings. Along with in-building access to Rockefeller Plaza and the Sixth Avenue subway lines below, 1285 Avenue of the Americas remains one of Midtown’s most prestigious addresses. In addition to UBS, other major tenants at 1285 Avenue of the Americas include the international advertising agency BBDO.
- 1285 Avenue of the Americas, New York, New York
- Rockefeller Center
- LEED–EB V2.0, Silver
- AXA Equitable
- Skidmore, Owings & Merrill
- Year Built
- Square Footage
- 1.7 million square feet
- UBS headquarters; other notable tenants include BBDO.
- Abundant Natural Light
- Active Refrigerant Management
- Adjacent Mass Transit Access
- Green Cleaning Program
- Natural Daylighting
- Sustainable Waste Management