The Amazon HQ2 Ground-Level Experience

  • December 6th 2021

by Nena Perry-Brown

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12th Street Plaza and Pavilion 2, looking north. Click to enlarge.

As the centerpiece development of Amazon's Northern Virginia headquarters campus continues through the review process in Arlington, the public is getting a better idea of how it will look from the ground.

Slated for the Pen Place site near S Fern Street and 12th Street S (map), Amazon's HQ2 proposal includes over three million square feet of office space across three buildings with ground-floor retail, another 24,000 square feet of retail across three "pavilion" buildings, and a nearly 350 foot-tall corkscrew-shaped office amenity building christened The Helix. There will also be over two acres of open space and nearly 2,000 below-grade parking spaces. 

Site plan. Click to enlarge.

In response to requests for a better idea of the pedestrian experience and building materials, the development team submitted a new slate of renderings to the county last week. 

Pavilion 3, looking southwest. Click to enlarge.

The design and materiality of the office buildings is meant to evoke the movement of and reflections off of water. Building T1 will have a stone base and stone and painted metal accents, the latter in shades of iridescent white, silver, blue and black, along with frittered and frosted glass. Building T2 will have a charcoal-colored metal base, a bronze-colored screenwall and textured panels, and painted metal panels in champagne and grey with iridescent lavender accents. 

Building T2. Click to enlarge.

Building T3 will have a charcoal stone base, beige cement panel, grey metal with red accents, a brick red screenwall, and colored glass in shades of orange and amber. The Helix will alternate bird-safe glazing with iridescent bronze perforated metal panels, and the pavilions will be timber with louvers concealed by timber scrims. Each building will also have green roof elements. NBBJ is the design architect and SCAPE is the landscape architect.

Retail Mews, between Pavilion 1 and Building T1, looking west. Click to enlarge.

Other features will include a Market Promenade, amphitheater steps, a childcare facility, a dog run, a water feature, winding forest paths, a Central Green, and a Retail Mews. The Arlington County Site Plan Review Committee will consider the project this week. Additional renderings are below.

Looking north from the upper deck of Pavilion 2. Click to enlarge.
Pavilion 3 and Building T1, looking west at Eads Street Plaza. Click to enlarge.
A rendering of office buildings T1 and T2, looking northeast from 12th Street S and S Fern Street. Click to enlarge.
Bird's-eye views of the Market Promenade, on a typical day and on a market day. Click to enlarge.

This article originally published at https://dc.urbanturf.com/articles/blog/the-amazon-hq2-ground-level-experience/19020.

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