New York Daily Photo Analytics

Friday, February 02, 2007

The Scholastic Building

This is the Scholastic Building at 557 Broadway in SOHO's cast iron district. The project was designed by celebrated Italian architect Aldo Rossi, described as a "poet who happens to be an architect." He died in an auto accident before construction began. Scholastic, established in 1920, is the world's largest publisher of children's books. They have a large presence in this area, occupying a number of buildings. This was Rossi's first and only project in NYC. The structure was built from scratch on a site which was home to a parking lot and a one story building (Broadway Lumber), taking six years to complete. The design with its white half-columns, spandrels and rust-red I-Beams is quite striking - "the building's columnar Broadway facade, in steel, terra-cotta, and stone, echoes the scale and the formal, Classical character of its commercial neighbors." The property extends one city block through to Mercer Street where the building sports its own similar but more industrial facade. Most critics love the design; some, of course, do not. The building expands Scholastic's previous headquarters next door at the Rouss Building (circa 1889) at 555 Broadway (photo left) - the floors are contiguous between the two buildings. The land itself is leased from the Blechman family, with an option to buy it in 2013. Read the story here. The new building serves as the primary entrance to Scholastic; the ground floor and mezzanine is a retail store with their line of books, videos, games, puzzles and toys. Do visit ...

6 comments:

John Nez said...

Looks lots nicer than their old building... where I often visited my editors, bringing in sketches (as a children's book illustrator). The old building was dark and corporate and grundgy.

Something about those tall windows reminds me of a school... which is very appropriate.

Brian said...

John;
I'm impressed you did illustration for them -not a small accomplishment!
Brian

Anonymous said...

Cool that they came up with such a good blend to the neighboring cast iron structures while still taking advantage of contemporary ideas such as very large windows and intereesting use of multiple materials...

Fabrizio ikol22 said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Fabrizio ikol22 said...

What most I love about it are those so wide windows. That the daily light may come in !!! --- Second but not last, as Brian said, the detailed illustration you did about it and about all your post !

Mme Benaut said...

Hi Brian,
This is my first visit to your site which is fantastic. I particularly love this photo and appreciate your detailed explanations. I've always wanted to visit New York and will get there one day, I hope.