Almost a year after WeWork announced its $850 million acquisition of the Lord & Taylor Building, the Landmarks Preservation Commission will now review plans to renovate and refurbish the iconic site, which will eventually serve as WeWork’s new global headquarters.
Lord & Taylor’s flagship location at 424 5th Avenue originally debuted in 1914. Through the decades, the Italian Renaissance-inspired structure became recognized as a New York City landmark. However, following a protracted period of declining sales and weak digital performance, the brand opted to vacate its 676,000 square foot retail operation.
Today, Bjarke Ingels Group, whose CEO and founder was recently named WeWork’s Chief Architect, will oversee design and reuse of the iconic property. The project team also includes LIVWRK, a Brooklyn-based developer, and preservation consultants Higgins Quasebarth.
New rooftop areas appear to be the most dramatic changes to the building’s exterior. Renderings illustrate landscaped terrace areas, refurbished courtyard areas, and flexible meeting and event spaces.
At street level, new bronze-clad entry doors will be installed in accordance with modern building codes and ADA compliance. The new, wider doors will be designed to match the existing structures in both material and profile.
The building’s facade, windows, and dramatic arched entryway will remain largely unaltered according to the most recent proposals and renderings submitted to the LPC.
While duration of construction has not been revealed, renovations could begin in Q1 2019 if approved by the commission. It is also unclear if Lord & Taylor will follow through with plans to to occupy a reduced retail operation on the building’s ground floor.