Hudson Yards in New York voted most super building in the world

New York’s Hudson Yards development is the most ‘super’ building in the world, according to the Landmark Foundation’s fifth annual list

Hudson Yards, in New York, is the world’s most “super” building, according to the Landmark Foundation’s fifth annual list of the 50 most important new structures in the world.

Hudson Yards, originally intended to be a vast, airport-style development, evolved into the world’s first so-called “neighbourhood-centric” superhighway of skyscrapers and is now home to luxury apartments, offices, shops and restaurants, as well as two dozen public parks and greenways.

Work on Hudson Yards began in 2004 and by 2016 became the world’s largest privately funded urban development project.

Carleton Watkins, chairman of the Landmark Foundation, said the huge tower’s “magnificent cantilevers, unfathomable geometry and powerful public spaces have made Hudson Yards a rare case of a thoroughly modern architectural experience … for those citizens who reside nearby”.

In second place, again, was the Time Warner Center in New York City, which features 90 stores, a residential tower, parklands and a long, tree-lined esplanade.

Juan Innocente, a senior architect with Bilbao-based m3, an architecture firm that designed the Public Library in Madrid, is the third most influential modern architect on the list and the only non-American. His firm has offices in Manchester, Barcelona and Buenos Aires.

Others on the list include winners of the 2018 Stirling prize, which this year went to Norman Foster’s “super-gorgeous” Hepworth Wakefield in the northern English county of West Yorkshire.

Also prominent on the list are the “extraordinary, challenging and compelling designs” of Sanaa, a Saudi Arabian architecture firm; EPC’s “aluminum sky gantry frame” building in Ghana’s capital, Accra; Majestic’s Whitecity Tower and Gressée Academy, both in Paris; Assemble’s SW Park and Bilbao’s Guggenheim Museum, the two buildings on the ground floor of the Wren Tower, which is also on the list.

The most innovative has gone to the Teken Center, in Swaziland. It is only 90 metres long and consists of three cylinder towers, each 240 metres high. It is the only design in the list that features both a living structure and a functional building.

The ranking is “important as it explores the advancements of modern architecture in the last quarter century,” said Watkins. “This is the first time that we have had a completely new concept of skyscraper: a skyscraper for living in, on the streets of, and around, without having to lift yourself up.”

In every listing, Watkins emphasised that the list had been compiled on a “proportionate” scale, based on construction data that was obtained through an extensive report, plus votes cast by thousands of architects, art directors, architects and architecture students at universities.

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