Pelli’s Winter Garden Redo: Don’t forget the Fabric Structure

There is a  plan to re-design the Cesar Pelli–designed World Financial Center Winter Garden in NYC and remove the hall’s grand marble staircase, sparking a debate between city planners and owner Brookfield Properties over the new design’s appropriateness.

The original design included 40 steps that serves as amphitheater seating for concerts and events held in the palm tree–planted glass court.

The new design, replaces the east entrance with a two-story glass box into which commuters would arrive from an underground connector to the PATH and subway stations, now under construction at the World Trade Center. The plan also adds a two-story market and 700-seat food court to the south side of the Winter Garden.

On the west side, Brookfield has suggested that a temporary stage and seating system would replace the garden’s amphitheater setup during events.

I, for one, applaud that suggestion but don’t forget to include the Fabric Structure.

If you’ve ever been to an event there, the place is spectacular.

The part I like the most?

The temporary fabric structure installed in front of the large glass wall.

Done while I was working at FTL Design and Engineering Studio in the 1980’s, its a two piece structure. One piece is used to reduce the amount of direct glare on the space while the other is a bandshell used to improve the acoustics in the space.


Fabric Structures can be used to improve the acoustic qualities of a space?

Yes. Just ask.

The Architect’s Newspaper.


One response to “Pelli’s Winter Garden Redo: Don’t forget the Fabric Structure

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