Jean Nouvel Still Upset He Had to Trim MoMA Tower

Back in October, starchitect Jean Nouvel finally won his battle over protesters and leery city officials when he got the go ahead for his MoMA tower plans. But that doesn’t seem to have been enough for him, given that he still seems pretty miffed that, in order to get the structure all the necessary thumbs up, he was going to have to shave off 200 feet from its top (and installing some shiny new fins to the side). He recently spoke to New York, offering up some fairly damning statements, wherein he just can’t understand why people dislike the building and “Why Manhattan, of all places, is afraid of heights?” According to the piece, there’s still a lot of revising to do in order to get the building’s plans to reflect the approved changes and it sounds like Nouvel’s not even certain he wants to go ahead with it anymore. Here’s a bit:

In Nouvel’s view, Tower Verre is not just another commercial high-rise but an emblem of its moment, a testament to the city’s self-renewing vitality, and a crown on its mutable skyline. “We’re in midtown,” he says. “A place where we have to make a real skyscraper. It emerges from the skyline and you say: Okay! That’s where MoMA is! It testifies to what the skyscraper is at the beginning of this century. It’s not a copy of what the twentieth century did. It brings new forms of expression. The corsetlike structure on the perimeter of the building, the way it follows setback rules with a dynamic form of ascent that’s not the habitual stepwise manner, a structure that erases the distinction between outdoors and in — these things tie this building to the culture of these last few years.”

Publish date: May 5, 2010 © 2020 Adweek, LLC. - All Rights Reserved and NOT FOR REPRINT