Volume 73, Number 4 | May 26 - June 1, 2004

Gehry glass tower to rise in Chelsea

By Albert Amateau

A rendering of the IAC project by Frank Gehry between 18th and 19th Sts.

Groundbreaking will begin next week on a nine-story tower with a sculpted glass facade, designed by the architect Frank Gehry on West St. in Chelsea for the new headquarters of IAC/InterActiveCorp.

The project between 18th and 19th Sts., across from the Chelsea Piers sports and entertainment complex, is scheduled for completion by the end of 2006.

IAC/InterActiveCorp is the parent company of several Internet-based commercial enterprises including Expedia, Inc., Hotels.com, Hotwire.com, Ticketmaster, Citysearch and LendingTree.

The company, headed by Barry Diller, has 116 locations in 31 states and 20 countries and has more than 25,000 employees. The Georgetown Company, a real estate developer and management firm based in Manhattan, is a development partner in the project.

The new IAC headquarters on the 29,380-sq.-ft. site on the east side of 11th Ave. will have underground ancillary parking for 70 cars and rise 155 ft. from the sidewalk level. The glass facade of the concrete structure will be insulated and have special coatings and patterned ceramic particles imbedded in it to improve energy efficiency.

The ground-floor public space will include a restaurant “that will reflect and utilize all of the IAC brands and be as interactive as the company and Frank Gehry can conjure,” according to a company statement.

“We are pleased that New York City both affords us the opportunity to build a unique and landscape-defining edifice, and benefits from the investment IAC is making in developing a corporate presence in Chelsea,” Diller said in a statement about the project.

Gehry, a Los Angeles-based architect, has won more than 100 awards from the American Institute of Architects. Among his buildings is the Guggenheim Museum in Bilbao, Spain.

Gehry’s sculpted glass facade tower on 11th Ave. for IAC continues the trend that includes Richard Meier’s two recently completed glass residential towers at Perry at West Sts. and another to rise next to them on Charles St. On Greenwich St. between Spring and Canal Sts., glass facades distinguish an 11-story residential tower designed by Winka Dubbeldam and a 14-story residential tower designed by Gary Handel & Associates. In the works is an 11-story Philip Johnson-designed residential tower with a glass facade at 328 Spring St. at the corner of Washington St. planned by developer Nino Vendome.

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