Bank of America Tower, New York, USA

Bank of America Tower at One Bryant Park is a 1,200 ft (366 m) skyscraper in the Midtown district of Manhattan in New York City, in the United States.  It is located on Sixth Avenue, between 42nd and 43rd Street, opposite Bryant Park. The US$1 billion project was designed by Cook+Fox Architects to be one of the most efficient and ecologically friendly buildings in the world. It is the second tallest building in New York City, after the Empire State Building, and the fourth tallest building in the United States. Construction was completed in 2009. In June 2010, the Bank of America Tower was the recipient of the 2010 Best Tall Building Americas award by the Council on Tall Buildings and Urban Habitat.

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The tower’s architectural spire is 255.5 ft (77.9 m) tall and was placed on December 15, 2007. The building is 55 stories high and contains 2,100,000 square feet (195,096 m2) of office space, three escalators and a total of 51 elevators manufactured by Schindler Group – 50 to serve the offices and one leading to the transit mezzanine below ground. Several buildings were demolished to make way for the tower. Among them was the Hotel Diplomat, a 13-story structure which occupied the site at 108 West 43rd Street since 1911, and Henry Miller’s Theatre, which was rebuilt and reopened under its previous location.

Environmental features

The design of the building makes it environmentally friendly, using technologies such as floor-to-ceiling insulating glass to contain heat and maximize natural light, and an automatic daylight dimming system. The tower also features a greywatersystem, which captures rainwater for reuse. Bank of America states that the building is made largely of recycled and recyclable materials. Air entering the building is filtered, as is common, but the air exhausted is cleaned as well. Bank of America Tower is the first skyscraper designed to attain a Platinum LEED Certification.

The Bank of America tower is constructed using a concrete manufactured with slag, a byproduct of blast furnaces. The mixture used in the tower concrete is 55% cement and 45% slag. The use of slag cement reduces damage to the environment by decreasing the amount of cement needed for the building, which in turn lowers the amount of carbon dioxide greenhouse gas produced through the normal cement manufacturing process. Each ton of regular cement produced creates about one ton of carbon dioxide in the atmosphere.

Temperature control and the production of some of its energy are accomplished in an environmentally friendly manner for the tower. Insulating glass reduces thermal loss, lowering energy consumption and increasing transparency. Carbon dioxide sensors signal increased fresh air ventilation when elevated levels of carbon dioxide are detected in the building. Conditioned air for the occupants is provided by multiple air column units located in the tenant space that deliver 62 degree air into a raised access floor plenum. This underfloor air system provides users with the ability to control their own space temperature as well as improving the ventilation effectiveness. When building churn occurs, workstation moves can be performed easier with lower cost and less product waste. The cooling system produces and stores ice during off-peak hours, and allows the ice to melt to help cool the building during peak load, similar to the ice batteries in the 1995 Hotel New Otani in Tokyo, Japan. Ice batteries have been used since absorption chillers first made ice commercially available 150 years ago, before the invention of the electric light bulb. Water conservation features in the tower include waterless urinals, which are estimated to save 8,000,000 USgal (30,000,000 l) of water per year and reduce CO2 emissions by 144,000 lb (65,000 kg) per year (as calculated with the Pacific Institute water-to-air model). The tower has a 4.6-megawatt cogeneration plant, which provides part of the base-load energy requirements. Onsite power generation reduces the significant electrical transmission losses that are typical of central power production plants. In June 2008, the New York Academy of Sciences launched a podcast which highlights these green features.


When comparing building height, only the structural height is used according to rules and regulations of the World Council on Tall Buildings. Currently, the New York Times Building and the Chrysler Building are tied for the position of the third tallest buildings in New York City. With the architectural spire included, the structural height of the Bank of America Tower is 1,200 ft (370 m), making it the second tallest building in New York City.

Empire State Building 1,472 ft (449 m) 1,250 ft (380 m)
Bank of America Tower 1,200 ft (370 m) 953.5 ft (290.6 m)
Chrysler Building 1,046 ft (319 m) 925 ft (282 m)
New York Times Building 1,046 ft (319 m) 748 ft (228 m)

A formal ruling by the World Council on Tall Buildings has been released, confirming this.

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