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Old Feb 14, 2011, 10:19 PM   #1
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Default Four New "Green" Buildings in and around Times Square

Three new buildings along 42nd Street and one on 41st Street are "green", meaning they take advantage of the sun and wind and optimize solar heating and cooling among other green technologies. They are also among the tallest skyscrapers in NYC. The "42nd Street" used to conjure images of the sleazy side of New York. Not anymore. Not only are these new buildings changing New York's skyline, they are also changing its red light district to green.

#1) 4 Times Square, a.k.a. Conde Nast Building on 42nd and Broadway is the 13th tallest building in NYC. Completed in 2000 it is the first green skyscraper in NYC. (source: Times Square Alliance) The building "does not need to be heated or cooled for the majority of the year...The building uses solar and fuel cell technology." (source: wikipedia.org)


#2) Bank of America Tower on 6th and 42nd is the 2nd tallest building in NYC. Completed in 2008 is the country's greenest high-rise building. Air vented by the building "back to the city will be cleaner than the intake, making the skyscraper effectively a giant air filter..." Floor-to-ceiling windows "permit maximum daylight and optimum views... Perimeter daylight dimming and LED lights reduce electric usage." (source: skyscraper.org)


#3) Eleven Times Square on 42nd and 8th. Completed in 2009, its efficient glass curtain wall "affords benefits in reducing heat gain, minimizing thermal loss and decreasing heating, cooling and overall utility costs" (source: nyrej.com). "75% of the space will be naturally lit" (source: Times Square Alliance). The building is LEED (Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design) Gold Certifified.


#4) New York Times Building on 41st and 8th is tied with the Chrysler building for the 3rd tallest building in NYC. Completed in 2007, the building's horizontal ceramic rods "act as a sunshade, sufficient in number to block half of the sun’s energy" while harvesting "natural light so that electric lighting is used just as a supplement". Its "very advanced dimmable lighting system and a dynamic shading system with real energy savings of well over 50%."


#5) The green-colored building on the left isn't "green". It was bought and renovated by MetLife from Verizon. Word has it that MetLife is having problems filling the building with tenants. The reason given is that its was renovated at a time of recession. The building on its right, the Bank of America Tower, however, doesn't seem to share that problem. Savings passed on by the building's "green" design to its tenants may well be one of the reasons.


Thank you for looking. C&C welcome.

[EDIT: Correction: MetLife didn't buy the building from Verizon. It was bought by Equity Office Properties which in turn was bought by the Blackstone Group. MetLife is a tenant in the building and is looking to sublease 100k sq. feet of rented office space. (source: nytimes.com) Blackstone is co-founded by Stephen A. Schwarzman whose name is now inscribed at the entrance to the New York Public Library on Fifth Avenue after making a $100K donation. There's a new book about Schwarzman, "King of Capital" by David Carey and John E. Morris, which came out in 2010.]

Last edited by vvcarpio; Feb 16, 2011 at 1:28 PM.
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Old Feb 15, 2011, 1:59 PM   #2
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These all look great to me. Can you tell us a little about the photos: camera, settings, post-processing, etc.?
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Old Feb 15, 2011, 3:16 PM   #3
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Thanks, Ajka.

I used 5 images all shot at different shutter speeds to produce an HDR image. I then cut out the HDR image's foreground and pasted it on a 6th image that is shot at a darker exposure than the original 5. The 6th image is darker but has more sky/cloud details.

To illustrate:

#1) This is the middle of the 5-shots I used to create the HDR image:


The 5 images were shot at varying shutter speeds of (in seconds) 2.5, 1.3, 1/1.7, 1/3, 1/6.

Below is the resulting, unprocessed HDR image. I used DPHDR5 with the optional Fusion step's "Strong" preset:


Below is image #6 that I used for the sky. It is shot at 1/13 second:


Combining the foreground of the second (HDR) image above and the sky of the third image above plus some processing using Topaz and Photoshop produced the final output.

My processing includes:

1) Topaz Detail on the HDR image's foreground at maximum resolution (my Sony A350 produces 4592 x 3056 image resolution). I used Topaz Detail's "Micro Contrast Enhancement" preset.

2) Topaz Adjust on the 6th image's sky at maximum resolution. I think I used the "Mild Color Pop" preset. You might notice the sky in #6 already looks fine but Topaz Adjust does some more magic on it to make it even several-orders-of-magnitude more dramatic.

3) Topaz Remask for creating the foreground cutout from the HDR image.

4) Photoshop for resizing to 1024 x 681.

5) Topaz DeNoise to remove noise.

6) Photoshop for sharpening and increasing contrast and saturation. I basically just adjust PS's sliders until I see what I like. I use Photoshop CS3 but all the sliders I used have equivalent sliders in Photoshop Elements 7. I know because I have both.

All images were shot at f/22. I used a 10mm-24mm "ultra-wide" lens at the 10mm focal length. I hope this helps.

Last edited by vvcarpio; Feb 15, 2011 at 3:29 PM.
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Old Feb 15, 2011, 3:24 PM   #4
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#6) This billboard on the Reuters Building in Times Square is "green". It is the world's first billboard to run solely on wind and solar power.
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Old Feb 15, 2011, 3:53 PM   #5
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Vvcarpio!

Astounding - is all I will say. # 2 - # 3 and # 4 are my pick!

You are rapidly becoming a master of this genre! Staggering, amazing, spectacular and prodigious (I had to look up that last one...!) are all synonyms to your work here.

Keep it up!
:^)



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Old Feb 15, 2011, 3:56 PM   #6
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Thanks a lot, Walter. I feel like a Grammy award winner (which was on TV the other night). I would like to thank...
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Old Feb 15, 2011, 4:33 PM   #7
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I second Walter's comments! Excellent!!
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Old Feb 16, 2011, 11:01 AM   #8
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Thank you, bhammitt.

#7) The TKTS booth in Times Square where you can score discounted Broadway tickets is "green". It uses "advanced LED technology" to light up the red steps that form its roof and doubles as an "amphitheatre-style staircase". The visitor may sit on the steps and appreciate a view of Times Square from an elevated position. The booth utilizes "unique geothermal-based heating and cooling technology". (source: interiordesign.net)


#8) Also on 42nd Street but farther down westside (in the neighborhood of Hell's Kitchen) is this mixed residential and commercial building still under construction. The building, Related's 440 West 42nd Street, is pursuing LEED-silver certification. (source: related.com)
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Old Feb 18, 2011, 1:03 PM   #9
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Love these shots.

Best regards/Daniel
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Old Feb 20, 2011, 7:42 PM   #10
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vv,

Great "physics" to the two first especially. You really found the verticals. Excellent

//T
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