The New York Times Building

New York, USA

Renzo Piano Building Workshop
http://rpbw. r.ui-pro. com

Founded in 1851 by Henry Jarvis Raymond and George Jones, The New York Daily Times was sold at one cent per copy. In 1857 the name was changed to The New York Times and, today, has the largest circulation of any local metropolitan newspaper in the United States. Only the The Wall Street Journal and USA Today exceed ‘The Times’ in overall sales.

Since its foundation “The Times” has been based in many locations in New York City, most notably from 1904 on Broadway in Long Acre Square, now Times Square. The Times Square headquarters is famous for the rolling headline news updates which are broadcasted to the street via a wraparound screen. The newspaper is part of The New York Times Company whose present chairman, Arthur Ochs Sulzberger Jr., is a descendant of Adolph Ochs who acquired the
newspaper in 1896. It was under the guidance of Ochs that ‘The Times’ earned its international reputation using the motto “All The News That’s Fit To Print” as his byword for quality journalism. The new headquarters of The New York Times can be found at 620 Eighth Avenue between West 40th and 41st Streets in Manhattan (Figs. 1-4). The high rise element of the development is a steel framed, curtain wall, 52 storey skyscraper shrouded by a ceramic sunscreen. The key aim of architect, Renzo Piano, was to construct a transparent, animated building. The facade is glazed with ultra clear, low iron glass. To integrate and anchor the tower to the street level, a Lobby Garden connects the tower to a 378 seat auditorium – The Times Centre. The Lobby Garden is accessible to the public, visible from the streets and forms a living, verdant connection between 40th and 41st.

72 The New York Times Building | New York | USA | Fig. 1 above | Fig. 2 opposite

J. A. Flannery, K. M. Smith, Eco-UrbanDesign, DOI 10.1007/978-94-007-0369-8_9, © Springer Science+Business Media B. V. 2011

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The development, which was undertaken jointly by The New York Times Company and Forest City Ratner Companies provides in excess of 730,000 square feet of Grade A office accommodation and retail space.

The design collaboration, between Renzo Piano Building Workshop of Genoa, Italy, and Manhattan architects FXFOWLE has delivered a building which combines advanced construction technologies with the human touch. Elevator passengers input their destinations in the lift lobby “pre-flight” which allocates efficient, logistical groupings of passengers to elevator cars.

The innovative, ceramic rod, solar shading system effectively reduces solar gain which allows the inner skin high transparency glazing to run from floor to ceiling. This strategy greatly increases the amount of natural light available to the work place. When combined with variable lighting levels, and an automatic shading system, energy savings of 30% can be achieved on floors 2 to 27 (which are occupied by the Times Company).

Additionally, the transparent walls of the tower provide the occupants with dramatic, panoramic views of the famous New York City skyline. When viewing the building from the outside, people can be seen in the working environment and moving up and down the convenience staircases.

This dynamism is also evident in the moveable type art installation in the tower lobby. Here digital display screens provide a progressive stream of current and historic New York Times content, redolent of the nearby Times Square installation. Renzo Piano’s guiding principles of transparency and openness extends through to the structural steel frame (containing 70% recycled content). Columns, beams and ties are all visible to the building’s occupants (Fig. 5) providing visual interest, and physical evidence of the skyscraper’s integrity.

The New York Times Building features multiple innovative, environmentally friendly features. In fact, The Times Company will generate more than 30% of its energy for its headquarters on site.





The gearless, high-speed "smart" elevators efficiently, smoothly and safely move passengers at speeds up to 1,600 feet per minute. Passengers input their destinations before entering the car, allowing the elevator dispatch system to group passengers and save time.

The building contains 23,500 tons of steel, nearly as much as the USS Intrepid; 70% is recycled content.


620 Eighth Avenue (between 40th and 41st Streets) New York, New York 10018


A second skin of ceramic rods acts as a sunshade and gently reflects the color of the sky. It Is the first of its kind to be built in the United States. By blocking half of the sun’s energy, we are able to have floor-to-celling glass that Illuminates the floors with an unusual amount of natural light.


In a first-of-its-kind Installation, shades automatically drop to block glare and lights dynamically adjust to settings customized by employees. This sophisticated system ma*lmizes the harvesting of daylight, optimizes work conditions and saves energy.


In contrast to conventional systems, air Is distributed under floor. This system offers building occupants higher levels of Individual comfort and control, and saves energy. This is the first of its kind large-scale Installation in a New York office building.


Two convenience stairs are located on each floor of the building, offering panoramic views up and down Eighth Avenue. The stairs encourage communication between departments and enliven the building exterior.


This media installation by New York artist Ben Rubin and U. C.LA. associate professor Mark Hansen is a dynamic portrait of The Times. Sophisticated algorithms are used to parse the daily output of the paper (news, features, editorials) as well as the activity of hundreds of thousands of daily visitors to NYTimes. com (browsing, searching, commenting).

The resulting refracted view of The Times is displayed on 700 small L. E.D. screens on both sides of the main corridor of the ground floor lobby.

The project is scheduled to open in fall 2007.

Updated: October 2, 2015 — 5:36 pm