Andrew Zhang


Class of: 2027

Major: Interior Design BFA

Medium: Paper and CAD

Faculty: Ian Gordon

Prompt: Choose a privately owned public space in New York, such as a park or a plaza. Consider its design and existing elements, then reinvent the design using original features. Recreate the site either on a CAD software or using a physical model, with the inclusion of your new designs and layout for the space.

Starting off, I chose 50 Lexington Avenue Plaza, located at the intersection of Lexington Avenue and 24th Street in Gramercy Park. The plaza serves as an entryway to the 50 Lexington condo that borders it. Its prominent features are two large planters, a couple wooden benches, and a glass canopy that connects to the condo as an ornate entrance to the building. The whole plaza is rather drab and gray, and does not serve the public very well as intended, but serves the residents of the condo instead. To amend this, I designed an original intervention using CAD software Rhino, to create the “Tangerine” pavilion, defined by its C-shape and orange color. The Tangerine pavilion provides shade and protection from the elements for community visitors of the plaza. Since there was a pizza parlor just around the corner, I prioritized seating comfortable seating spaces for people to enjoy their takeouts. My reinvented site rid the glass canopy and the two large planters to provide space for more Tangerine pavilions, providing more seating areas. In addition, I added designated pathways that weaved through the pavilions, adorned with arches that provided more shade. I removed the lamp posts that dominated the border of the plaza, and designed lower-set lights scattered into the plaza instead. This would result in a warmly lit plaza throughout, with lighting near every pavilion. My full redesigned 50 Lexington Avenue Plaza includes 7 Tangerine Pavilions, 9 low-set lamps, 3 extra arched seating pavilions, 2 additional bike racks, and a sculpture. The combined human capacity of the plaza is 30, with all given comfortable spacing and seating.