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Atlantic Yards/Pacific Park graphic: what's built/what's coming + FAQ (pinned post)

So, 461 Dean has blue (?) to "help the high-rise blend in with surrounding buildings"?

461 Dean in rear, blending in
Ok, now we know. According to Architectural Digest, 11/17/16, The World's Tallest Modular Skyscraper Welcomes Its First Residents, "Designed by SHoP Architects and located next to the Barclays Center, 461 Dean Street was built to blend into its historic Brooklyn neighborhood."

Oh really? Here's more explanation:
It just so happens that the firm behind the record-setting tower is the New York–based SHoP Architects, the same that designed the Barclays Center. This fact is significant, since cohesive aesthetics are increasingly important to many Brooklynites. To that end, SHoP used multiple exterior colors to help the high-rise blend in with surrounding buildings (red for historic brownstones and blue for the modern skyscrapers).
Well, given that 461 Dean (aka B2) has black and silver panels, as well, I'm not sure that's fully thought-out (or, maybe, fully explained). Let's put it this way: nobody thinks 461 Dean blends in.

Even SHoP architects, in its designs for three towers on the arena block, is not aiming at blending in.


  1. ShOP practices in a world of self-proclaimed "cutting edge" design that is "challenging" and "confrontational."

    ShOP partner Gregg Pasquarelli talked about this in New York magazine a few years ago, along with critic Justin Davidson and architects Robert A.M. Stern and Bernard Tschumi, Pasquarelli's former Dean at Columbia:

    Davidson: One example, Bernard, might be your Blue condo, a glass tower in varied shades of, yes, blue that looms over the brick tenements of the Lower East Side. Does violating New York traditions make a building less New Yorky?

    Tschumi: No. New York can take it.

    Davidson: Has any building gone beyond what New York can tolerate?

    Dubbeldam: I wish!

    Robert A.M. Stern: Well, the buildings that entertain Bernard’s friends, who jet in from wherever, don’t really make any contribution except as big art objects. The city can take them, but what are they telling us? They don’t offer any new insights about how people live, or about the relationship to the street or to the sky. Just a new curtain wall, and a strange one at that. To be a good citizen is to work with the city and not against it.

    Gregg Pasquarelli: I disagree. Like other kinds of art, great buildings contradict everything else. They make us think. They start conversations, so people talk about what it means to fit in, what it means to have courage. It’s okay for some buildings not to work.

    Tschumi: Maybe that’s what a city is: confrontation and complication. In New York, the name of the game is to have one’s own envelope. When you arrive from the airport and you look at the skyline, you see this incredible variety—a symphony of envelopes.


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