NY’s Green Horizon

With a spate of new towers on the rise, the future of the city’s skyline looks sustainable.

The current discussion about green building tends to center around impossibilities—either of pie-in-the-sky ideas or of big towers actually being green. A new show at the Skyscraper Museum, Green Towers for New York: From Visionary to Vernacular, throws the myth that big has to be bad out with the (unrecycled) bathwater. While LEED certification—with its emphasis on common standards and sticking to the rules—continues to be the paperwork holy grail of green buildings, many of the featured structures propose radically new ways of being environmentally friendly. The proof is in the buildings. In a few years, when the six designs we’ve chosen to highlight are complete, the New York City skyline just might be a little glassier, a little taller, and a little greener.

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