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Austrian Cultural Forum

PRECEDENT STUDY: documentation

Building Type Institutional, Government Location 11 East 52nd Street, New York City between Fifth Avenue and Madison Avenue Client Republic of Austria, Federal Ministry for Foreign Affairs Owner Republic of Austria, Federal Ministry for Foreign Affairs Architect Atelier Raimund Abraham, New York, United States Developer BIG(Bundesimmobiliengesellschaft m.b.H.), Vienna, Austria Dr. Hartwig A. Chromy, Managing Director Dipl.-Ing. Gerhard A. Buresch, Managing Director Developer Representative Hanscomb Inc., New York, United States Total area 30,000 square feet Site Dimensions Width: 25 feet Depth: 81 feet, 4 inches Height: 278 feet, 6 inches Story: 23-story Floor Area Gross: 33,000 square feet Net: 24,850 square feet Construction start: 1998 Timeline Completion: 2002 Construction commences: September 1998 Construction complete: January 2002 Dedication: April 18, 2002 Public Opening: April 19, 2002

The Austrian Cultural Forum tower in midtown Manhattan provides a state-of-the art home for an institution devoted to international cultural exchange. The Forum is the first major public building in the United States by Austrian-born New York architect Raimund Abraham, who received the commission in 1992 in an international design competition hosted by the Federal Ministry for Foreign Affairs of the Republic of Austria. The Austrian Cultural Forum building have been intended from the outset as both a home in America for contemporary Austrian culture and Austrian-American collaborations in the arts, and a significant architectural contribution to Manhattan's urban landscape. The Federal Ministry for Foreign Affairs of the tion of the utmost formal reduction, challenging the indigenous variations of the surrounding buildings." However the facilities of forum includes exhibition galleries; a flexible theater for performances, screenings, and lectures; a library; loft-like presentation areas and seminar rooms; reception and meeting spaces; staff offices; a multi-level residence for the Forum's director; and an open-air loggia at the tower's pinnacle.

Raimund Abraham divided the building into three vertical parts; "the Mask", "the Vertebra" and "the Core". The most visible segment, "the Mask", is the facade of teal-colored glass that tapers upwards to comply with zoning laws. The diagonal steel braces are visible behind the glass skin. A protruding box-like volume, containing the director's office, cantilevers over the space housing the institute's glass enclosed Library. Next comes "the Core" that contain the main structural elements and enclosed spaces and, to the rear of the building, "the Vertebrae", the metal-sheathed double fire stairwell that lines the back of the building.

PRECEDENT STUDY: documentation

Republic of Austria, have described the building as "a deliberate manifesta-

Director’s Living Room and Roof Terrace

PRECEDENT STUDY: documentation


Programs + Subcellar - Mechanical Equipment and Storage (level-2) + Main Gallery (level-1) + Entry and Public atrium (Main and Mezzanine levels) + Theatre (lever2) and Balcony (level3) + Offices (levels 6 through 11) + Technical, Storage, and Forum Apartments (level12 through 15) + Director's residence (level 16 through 19)

+ Above the staircase, there is water tower,

+ Outdoor Terrace (level 20)

ventilation louvre at each side, and cooling tower louvred encloseure

+ Rooftop Mechanical Space

Stanless steel cyliunder contains the central passenger elevator

PRECEDENT STUDY: documentation

+ Mechanical Equipment (level 21 and 22)

Stair Case and Galleray

Vertebrae (Stair Tower)

Office Space and Director’s Office

and Library

1100 sq ft Theatre The wood-panelled theatre has a removable state and a hoist to raise the piano to its storage position in the ceiling void

PRECEDENT STUDY: documentation

Spiral Staircase in the Director’s Apartment: Economy of Space

Austrian Cultural Forum Documentation  

Precedent Study Documentation

Austrian Cultural Forum Documentation  

Precedent Study Documentation