ZOETIC CENTER - Manhattan Marine Transfer Station

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Industrial & Infrastructure

New York, New York

Idea

2016

40,000 sq. ft.

Arch-Reporter

NJIT 2016 Super Jury

The objective was to design a Marine Transfer Station (MTS) for a site on the west side of Manhattan along the Hudson River shore. The program for the project was to include an industrial recyclables transfer facility combined with an environmental and community center. It needed to be pile supported steel structure consisting of three interrelated physical elements. These include: (1) an upper level or "tipping floor" that is accessible via a ramp and an access road, capable of accommodating up to thirty vehicles per hour; (2) a lower or "barge slip" level within which two open hopper barges can be positioned to directly receive recyclables discharged by vehicles from the "tipping floor" above; (3) and an enclosed public area including a lecture and exhibit hall with a separate entrance from which the transfer operations conducted can be observed. The land adjacent to the site needed to be modified as well, which is the midpoint between the MTS and the Whitney museum. The overarching goal of the Manhattan Transfer project is to create a dynamic, educational and culturally valuable amenity to the park and the city at large.

The goal of the facility along with the park was to rethink what a transfer station is and what it needed to be in this era. 'Zoetic Center' is not hiding program within walls. The facility was physically and visually open horizontally to its surroundings. In the vertical direction, there are powerful column modules that holds up the horizontal planes. A bold gesture was taking away the ability to inhabit inside these columns. In turn, the top and bottom of these modules were pierced to the sky above and the water below. They are iconic and monumental, and they are structurally complex yet visually simple and elegant. The hyperbolic structural supports are made of continuous lengths of steel arrayed in a way that when combined, it acts as a unit. The product became a spectacle. The building is translucent  both by openings and glazing. The building disappears into the river when viewed from the surrounding skyscrapers because of the blue roof feature. Besides the given program, it also incorporates a museum, an auditorium, and a learning center.

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