By Catherine A. Cardno, Ph.D.

(Rendering courtesy of dbox / Foster + Partners)

New York City-based JPMorgan Chase, a multinational investment bank and financial services holding company, has released the design of its new global headquarters in New York City. To be located at 270 Park Ave. in Manhattan, the 1,388 ft tall, 60-story building will be the city’s largest all-electric tower. It will also operate with net-zero carbon emissions.

The building will be 100% powered by renewable energy sourced from a hydroelectric plant within the state. To conserve energy, sensors, artificial intelligence, and machine learning systems will be installed to predict, respond, and adapt to energy needs. This will include the use of automatic solar shades that are connected to the heating, ventilating, and air conditioning system to improve energy efficiency.

Water will also be conserved with advanced water storage and reuse systems that are expected to reduce water usage by more than 40% over a typical building of this size.

The tower was designed by London-based Foster + Partners, a global studio for architecture, engineering, urban, and landscape design. The design boasts an inverted podium that will offer more than 2.5 times more ground-level outdoor plaza space than was previously available on the site, which extends a full block from Park to Madison Avenue.

Wider sidewalks and a large public plaza on the Madison side of the site will offer green space and other amenities for the neighborhood’s residents, workers, and visitors.

An innovative fan-column structure and triangular bracing will enable the building to negotiate site constraints below and at ground level, according to the design team.

The building will include 2.5 million sq ft of flexible, collaborative space that can be adapted as necessary for future work requirements. Column-free floor plates will enable interior layouts to be easily adapted and potential inter-floor connections to be added, according to the design team.


(Rendering courtesy of Foster + Partners)

Sustainability is a core focus of the design, and daylight, fresh air, and biophilic elements are included to improve the well-being of employees working in the building.

The design also includes 50% more communal spaces and 25% more volume of space per person than is typical in buildings of this size to provide greater choices for employees choosing where and how to work. The well-being benefits include double the typical amount of outdoor air and 30% more daylight than is typical in buildings of this size.

(Rendering courtesy of LightField London)

The tower should become a new landmark in Midtown, according to Norman Foster, the founder and executive chairman of Foster + Partners, who is quoted in press material distributed about the design.

“The unique design rises to the challenge of respecting the rhythm and distinctive streetscape of Park Avenue while accommodating the vital transport infrastructure of the city below,” Foster says. “The result is an elegant solution where the architecture is the structure, and the structure is the architecture, embracing a new vision that will serve JPMorgan Chase now and well into the future.”

(Rendering courtesy of dbox / Foster + Partners)

The new building has been designed to host up to 14,000 employees and replaces an outdated JPMorgan Chase facility designed in the late 1950s with a 3,500-employee capacity. A whopping 97% of the building materials from the demolition were recycled, reused, or upcycled.

(Rendering courtesy of Foster + Partners)

The building will also include a health and wellness center, prayer and meditation spaces, and a large food hall. The tower will be topped with a world-class conference center offering unobstructed city views, according to the design team.