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INHABITAT TOUR: NYC’s LEED Platinum Cooper Union Academy
This year The Cooper Union for the Advancement of Science and Art opened a stunning new academic building in downtown Manhattan that boasts a bevy of green building strategies. Designed by Morphosis, the project replaces the existing Hewitt Academic Building and incorporates many of the demolished building materials. We recently had the opportunity to tour and photograph the new building for a first-hand look at this revolutionary project – read on for our exclusive report!
Named after its address at 41 Cooper Square in Manhattan’s East Village, the 9-story, 175,000 sf environmentally-responsible building was conceived by the Cooper Union as an innovative education center for art, architecture and engineering. The project was designed by Los Angeles–based architecture and research firm Morphosis under the direction of principal and founder, Thom Mayne and local associate architect Gruzen Samton.
The building consists of a standard glass and aluminum window wall that is concealed by a dynamic operable building skin made of perforated stainless steel panels. The screen actively works to control sunlight diffusion by lowering the flow of heat radiation in summer months, and serving as a protective armor during winter months, reducing energy loss. Passerby on the street are able to get glimpses inside the building through the breaks in the facade, yet the most astounding views come from the interior spaces looking outward onto the streets of New York.
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