Allied Works and the Museum of Arts and Design completed a major adaptation of 2 Columbus Circle, a 1963 building designed for the grocery magnate Huntington Hartford by noted architect Edward Durell Stone. By the late 1990’s the building had fallen into disuse and disrepair, and was held by the City of New York until a suitable organization could be found to restore and operate the facility.
The design opens the building to natural light and views to Central Park and city on all sides. A series of cuts open the building’s concrete shell, each one a continuous line that unites the façade, walls, floors and ceilings. This single act transforms and edits the building from a closed volume to a light-filled, cantilevered structure. Inset with transparent and fritted glass, these cuts weave across the new terracotta-tiled façade. Each of the 22,000 tiles is finished in an iridescent glaze—designed by artist Christine Jetten and fabricator Royal Tichelaar Makkum—that changes with the time of day and point of view. With prospects along Broadway, across the Park, and to the Hudson River, the Museum offers new connections between the creative works it houses, the programs and artists it supports, and the life of the city.