The Greenest Skyscaper In The U.S.?

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This skyscraper, One Bryant Park, is being constructed on 42nd street in New York. The tower will be hard to miss: it has a faceted glass facade that maximizes the daylight entering the building, while minimizing the heat. The 54-story building is designed to earn the LEED Platinum rating (the highest designation from the U.S. Green Building Council), thereby setting a new standard for green skyscrapers in New York.


Some of the design goals include: reducing energy consumption by a minimum of 50%, and reducing water consumption by 50%. All the green design features will only add 1-2% to the cost of construction. Those costs should be recouped in 2-4 years, due to the energy savings involved.

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One Bryant Park comes with floor-by-floor air-handling units and an under-floor duct system allow occupants to precisely tailor their heating and cooling. They also increase efficiency and reduce the need for space heaters and sweaters to compensate for excessive air conditioning. Other environmental features of the building include a “gray water” system that recycles rain and other wastewater, and a co-generation plant that will produce some of the building’s energy on-site.

Like its brethren green towers, it resulted from three crucial factors: an experienced green architect (Cook + Fox Architects), a visionary developer (The Durst Organization), and a combination of tax credits and government funding for energy-modeling and energy-saving equipment.

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