85 Broad Street

Originally Goldman Sachs Headquarters


The former headquarters of Goldman Sachs, this 27-story building is known for being a forgettable-looking piece of architecture in lower Manhattan which is how the AIA Guide described it. To Eliot Brown writing in the New Yorker it was “one of those bland, squint-windowed, stone-fronted thirty-story monstrosities. The brownish tower isn`t interesting enough to be ugly: You have to know what`s inside before anything gets interesting. Goldman Sachs became the world`s most important firm in a spectacularly dull, purposefully frumpy, desperately anonymous tower. Inside, it smelled like cigarettes in the 1980s and homemade chocolate chip cookies on the 30th floor. Babies cried in the first-floor day-care center; Jon Corzine worked outside in a Town Car parked on the curb after his ousting; and Hank Paulson felt sad when birds flew into the windows."

Constructed, 1983
Renovation, 2016

Beacon Capital Partners acquired 85 Broad Street in 2014. An experiential design-driven corporate lobby renovation was done that would make the property more enticing to media and technology tenants.Through the middle of the lobby runs a curved corridor that replicates the former route of colonial-era Stone Street. incorporated digital media, software-driven lighting, and wayfinding graphics with the building, ESI brightened the dark corridor by installing light bars that function as a custom low-resolution video ceiling displaying subtle lighting patterns. One animation shows sky and clouds, as if the corridor were open to the air like it was when it was a street.In the entryways, seven expansive relief maps of Manhattan cover the walls, putting 85 Broad’s unique and historic location into the larger context of the city. Sculptural chandeliers echo the light bars that run down the corridor.At the end of each elevator bay, transparent LCD screens, mounted over the historic relief maps, mix opacity and clarity, alternatively obscuring and revealing the details of the maps underneath. The screens display real-time content such as local weather, traffic and social media trends useful for visitors.The building’s two exterior entrances are illuminated with oversize LED arches that announce and draw pedestrians down the path of old Stone Street. The Broad Street arch is dynamic, featuring geometric animations, map imagery and generative text patterns that relate to the custom media inside.A light installation spiraling through the building’s exterior arcade features light bars and reflective blades that alternate and twist, adding dynamism to the exterior of the building.


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