Wednesday, September 09, 2009

Arena design released: "Weathered steel and glass" (but what about the rest of the project?)

Well, the new designs of the Atlantic Yards arena have been released and, while it's surely an improvement over the Ellerbe Becket "hangar," the buildings around it are, at best, mirages, there's no Phase 2 (of course), and it's hard to believe that the arena--as previously stated--would be 150 feet tall. The renderings portray it as far more modest.

From the press release:
Bruce Ratner, the Chairman and CEO of Forest City Ratner Companies (FCRC), the developer of Atlantic Yards in Brooklyn, announced today that the award-winning architectural firms Ellerbe Becket and SHoP Architects will collaborate on the design of the Barclays Center, the new world-class sports and entertainment venue that will serve as the anchor of the planned development and home to the NETS Basketball team.

A smaller arena

The arena was originally supposed to be 850,000 square feet:
FCRC also released new design images of the 675,000 square-foot arena, which will be located at the intersection of Atlantic and Flatbush Avenues in Brooklyn. The images can be seen at www.barclayscenter.com. The images and a model will also be available for public viewing at Brooklyn Borough Hall beginning at 10 a.m. on Monday, September 14, 2009.

(Click on graphics to enlarge,)

"Weathered steel and glass"

The release continues:
“The Barclays Center will quickly become an iconic part of the Brooklyn landscape,” said Mr. Ratner. “The design is elegant and intimate and also a bold architectural statement that will nicely complement the surrounding buildings and neighborhoods. The Barclays Center will be innovative in its look and use of materials, including weathered steel and glass, and will be the best place in the world to watch a basketball game and other forms of sports and entertainment.”

Multiple perspectives

It continues:
Several images were released today that show the Barclays Center from different perspectives, including each major arrival point at the site perimeter. The arena was designed to accommodate other buildings on the arena block that will be part of the Atlantic Yards development, including three mixed-income residential buildings and the commercial building known as B1, along with the Urban Room that will provide access to the Barclays Center.

Three bands

The building consists of three separate but woven bands. The first engages the ground where the weathered steel exterior rises and lowers to create a sense of visual transparency, transitioning into a grand civic gesture that cantilevers out into a spectacular canopy at the corner of Atlantic and Flatbush Avenues. The canopy, which is 30 feet above ground level, contains an oculus that frames the pedestrian’s view of the arena. The second, a glass band, allows for views from inside and outside of the arena. The third band floats around the roof of the Barclays Center and varies in transparency, the weathered steel creating backlit patterns.

The woven band of the canopy will flow out over the arena entrance, creating a seamless visual transition and helping to frame a large viewing portal into the seating area. The main concourse is placed right at street level, allowing a direct view to and from the street. Large areas of glass at street level make it not only pedestrian-friendly, but also encourage a strong visual connection to the surrounding urban neighborhood.


Opening in 2011-12

The release includes the dubious prediction that the arena would open in 2011-12:
Construction is expected to begin on the arena later this year, with an anticipated opening during the 2011 – 12 NETS season.

William Crockett, Principal and National Director of Sports Architecture at Ellerbe Becket, which has designed some of the world’s most heralded sports facilities, including the Conseco Fieldhouse in Indiana and the iconic Guangdong Olympic Stadium in Beijing, said, “While the Barclays Center will be the most exciting venue in the country to watch a game, we believe it will also become a destination for people interested in design and the urban environment.

We’ve given special attention to designing what will be the first of an entire new generation of high-performance multi-purpose arenas in the nation. One of the notable assets to the fan experience is the arena’s seating configuration; whether fans attend a NETS game or a concert at the Barclays Center, visitors will have a dramatically intimate view of the action plus a direct visual link of the surrounding neighborhood.”

Gregg Pasquarelli, a Founding Principal at SHoP Architects, the New York based firm that is designing the East River Waterfront at the South Street Seaport and the new Fashion Institute of Technology C2 Building, and is the winner of the 2009 National Design Award for Architecture Design, said, “The design of an arena in an urban context requires a critical balance between an iconic form and the street. It must be legible at multiple scales – on the skyline, from five blocks away, from the plaza and while touching the door. It must also have an identity that delights the occupants, visitors and neighbors.”

Jerry del Missier, President of Barclays Capital, said, “This is a striking contemporary design for the Barclays Center. Barclays is proud to be part of the redevelopment of Brooklyn and of bringing professional sports back to the borough.”

The state-of-the-art facility will have 18,000 seats for basketball and up to 19,000 seats for concerts. There will be 100 luxury suites, including 16 Brownstone Suites (16 seats each), 67 Loft Suites (10 seats each), 11 Courtside Suites, four Club Suites and two Party Suites. The arena will also include 40 loge boxes, six clubs and restaurants, and the Barclays Center Practice Facility on site.

5 comments:

  1. It looks like a baseball cap.

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  2. The project needs to be scaled into something workable, and the arena can be anywhere along miles of underutilized brooklyn waterfront, or even, if they really want to improve a blighted neighborhood as they calm, the whole project can move about 8 blocks west to where atlantic has almost nothing but auto body shops and vacant lots. there's even an LIRR station that can be used.

    like here: http://tinyurl.com/m7f326
    or
    here: http://tinyurl.com/krclx7

    but equally insane are these renderings. the second image shows a crowd of kids about to wander gleefully into Atlantic Avenue, a six lane stretch of people slicer!

    Once again, why is it wrong to stop this madness as it currently stands?

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  3. I'm assuming BrooklynBorn meant eight blocks *east*.

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  4. yeah, meant *east* on atlantic. Theres plenty of barren stretches between classon and forever... Pacific is under utilized btwn grand and franklin as well. Although, if the goal is to screw a neighborhood as it appears to be, than west could work too...

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  5. it looks like a giant powder compact. gross.

    ReplyDelete