A Tour of Jolly Green Monster One Bryant Park as It (Officially) Opens

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The recently completed Bank of America tower (a.k.a. One Bryant Park) will have its official grand opening gala Thursday night—complete with scheduled appearances by Mayor Bloomberg and tenant Al Gore—with the owners throwing the celebration now that some final touch-up work is finally completed and the scaffolding has been taken down. (The building opened to tenants in 2008.)

On account of the “opening,” we took a tour of the tower on Wednesday.

Here’s Mr. Durst, the taciturn liberal landlord whose family owns and built many a tower in midtown. At one point, his father, Seymour Durst, had a giant plan to remake Times Square into something of a new Rockefeller Center.

 

Brian Letwin

Bob Fox, left, has worked for Mr. Durst before. His prior firm, Fox and Fowle (partner Bruce Fowle is now with FXFowle), designed the neighboring 4 Times Square. On the right is Jordan Barowitz, Mr. Durst’s government and public relations aide and a former city official.

 

Brian Letwin

Here’s a view of the lobby, which is, notably, a corner entrance, as the owners opted against packing the busy corner with retail. 

 

Brian Letwin

The lobby is a spacious one, with ceilings made of bamboo, Mr. Fox told us. The interiror walls on this side of the lobby are made of polished Jerusalem Stone (limestone), which, when one looks close, is filled with fossils. The lobby also has a pleasant little “urban garden” room off the northeast corner, a privately owned public space. 

 

Brian Letwin

Here’s the north end of the lobby, which, Mr. Fox tells us, has walls coated with leather (a renewable resource). 

 

Brian Letwin

Mr. Durst called this the engine room, and the machines on the right are giant water chillers. We apparently are about 80 feet down, which is extremely deep for a New York tower. 

 

Brian Letwin

Here’s another sustainability feature. At night, when power is in greater supply, the building creates ice in these gigantic tubs. Then during the day, when power is more expensive, the ice is melted to create chilled water—rather than using energy to directly chill the water. The result is the use of slightly more electricity overall, but at more optimal times. 

 

Brian Letwin

Here’s a look from Mr. Durst’s office on the 49th floor. On the left is a double pane of glass that faces south—an energy-saving measure. 

 

Brian Letwin

Here’s the rest of the office, and we’re playing with an air-conditioning vent (not pictured) on the floor. The vents are dotted throughout the floors and are individually adjustable.

 

Brian Letwin