The architects of the new Urban Exchange building drew their inspiration from the decades of historic architecture surrounding it. At the time each of these buildings were constructed, they too were contemporary, cutting edge. The two L-shaped towers are separated by a green rooftop Plaza and joined by three brightly colored bridges. Not just any bright colors, but red, yellow and blue—the three primary colors, the basis for all the color the human eye can see. It is a return to the basic. It is pure and honest. It is also playful and vibrant with an intrinsic energy that contributes to a downtown full of life.
Philippe Jentsch, MTFA’s lead architect on the Urban Exchange design project, offers the following insights into the thoughts, ideals and goals that shaped this project:
- The bridges connecting the two L shaped building express life, motion as well as connection and unity. They are sculptural when empty and yet useful and playful when used and experience. The Plaza’s design below evokes fields of crops as seen from the sky.
- The brick cube elements anchor the project to the site with retails spaces at the ground level to reclaim the street and spark life and interaction.
- The Plaza offers pockets of sitting areas of different size to accommodate solo to medium group activities.
- The bridges are directly inspired by the industrial structures visible around town
- The geometry of the bridges is reflected throughout the project, from the Plaza layout and material transitions to the elevator lobbies, from the corridors “rays of light” pattern of finishes and lighting to the angles walls inside the condos, with some unique ones actually bisected by the bridges passing by
- Each floor is unique and themed around the primary color of the bridge connected to it
- The unique top floor lofts help the project meet the sky with smaller volumes and shapes made of metal and glass projecting past the brick mass to engage the street and the exciting downtown views.
For more information, please visit the Urban Exchange.