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Seating on a Grand Scale: Times Square TKTS
Many times a week I pass by Times Square and the relatively new TKTS booth standing in its midst. It is a terrific design that integrates a rank of "stadium" seating overlooking Times Square with the TKTS booth where hundreds of tourists and New Yorkers line up daily to buy discounted same-day tickets to Broadway and Off-Broadway shows. The decorator in me thinks it is a great piece of furniture. I think the metaphor of placing a section of theater seating here so its users can have a theatrical view of the setting works really well.
The TDF website describes the booth and stairs:
"The new TKTS booth is a state-of-the-art fiberglass shell encased by an all-glass structure, which sits under a glowing red glass staircase. The slip-resistant glass steps are lit from below with advanced LED technology, and utilize unique geothermal-based heating and cooling technology. From atop this amphitheatre-style staircase, 27 steps high, 16 feet above street level, visitors now have a unique vantage point to take in the excitement of Times Square as never before, making Duffy Square a new destination for New Yorkers and visitors alike."
The team behind the project deserves much credit for their well integrated design:
"The ticket booth itself is a fiberglass shell fabricated by Merrifield-Roberts of Bristol, R.I which also makes boat hulls. The overall structure was designed by Nicholas S. Leahy and his colleagues at Perkins Eastman, based on a competition-winning concept by the architects John Choi and Tai Ropiha. William Fellows was the landscape architect. Dewhurst Macfarlane & Partners were the structural engineers."
When the original TKTS booth went down I mourned its loss-I liked its vintage design and impromptu style. But, it really was obsolete, especially since the Times Square of the 1970s that it was designed for is long gone, meaning the old background of movie theaters, small shops and restaurants that were demolished to make way for high-rises and corporate retail. The new booth makes a stronger transition to the new monoliths of Time Square by forming a platform for pedestrians to sit-in effect it is furniture large enough to suit this ever-grander context
The original TKTS booth