Design Principal Ken Drucker talks about HOK’s design for South Korean manufacturer LG’s North American headquarters and describes how it minimizes the impact on the natural habitat.
The 352,000-sq-ft building on a 27-acre site in Englewood Cliffs, New Jersey, topped out earlier this fall and is set for completion in late 2019.
“We have a project on budget … and a beautiful glass building … that will be in a natural setting on the edge of the Palisades Parkway,” says Ken Drucker, principal in New York City at HOK, the project’s designer.
The resulting design calls for a two-wing building that is five stories—four stories above grade on one side—and three stories above on the other. The two sides come together at a glass-enclosed 18,000-sq-ft “cube” at the heart of the structure. The wings will house executive and open-plan offices, collaborative and dining spaces and a gym, while the cube will have the lobby, showrooms for LG’s large suite of products, training and meeting spaces, and an educational science center for students.
“We’re following European standards for getting daylight deep into the floor space, so the building wings are only about 98 feet wide,” Drucker says. “A typical New Jersey building is 120 feet to 140 feet wide.”
Another key element is restoration and mitigation of five wetlands on the site, says Drucker. The team created a retention pond for stormwater collection to reduce site runoff into natural areas and nearby properties.
The project will also gain sustainability points for its proximity to mass transit, for adding walking paths around the perimeter of the site and for mitigating light pollution with indirect site lighting and automatic shades, he says.
The LG building is even bird friendly, Drucker says. “We’ve created a lot of restoration habitat, and we followed Audubon Society guidelines for bird protection,” he says.
The structure’s sustainability features now qualify it for LEED Gold status, but it may eventually rise to Platinum level, says the building tea.