Pinterest's NYC offices are located on the 4th and 5th floors of a building across the street from the New York Public Library on 5th Ave. One of the given programmatic elements of the design brief for the space was to create a central communication stair linking the two levels of PiNYC. While the Public Library across the street has several impressive staircases within the interior, the "scissor stair" is the most intriguing for us as architects -- particularly in its dynamic merging together of paths from two directions, and in its ability to choose one of two directions at the connective landing. We positioned our reinterpretation of the scissor stair at the central bay of the PiNYC workspace. The stair forms a visual focal piece and porous, inhabitable screen as you enter the reception area from the elevator lobby at both levels. The stair's sculptural form on the outside shifts in its level of transparency as one moves around it, due to the depth and spacing of the vertical wood slats that make up its enclosing envelope.
Upon entering the stair, its outward appearance as a shifting figural object lodged with one structural bay gives way to the complex spatial interplay offered to the moving viewer. Here the slats perform the inverse role of shifting in transparency out toward the 'all hands', dining and workspace that surround it. The enlarged overlap of the scissoring stair runs and generous central encourages passersby to engage and communicate as the ascend or descend.
Structurally the stair is conceived of and detailed as a material hybrid: vertical steel support plates suspend each step and are embedded within the vertical oak slats. A game of concealing and revealing is played in how the steel structure is subtly exposed, emerging from within the oak.
Credits: - IwamotoScott Architecture - Project Team - John Tuthill - IwamotoScott Architecture - Project Team - Brandon Sampson - IwamotoScott Architecture - Founding Partner - Lisa Iwamoto - Spector Group (executive architect) - Project Manager - David Beauchamp - IwamotoScott Architecture - Project Designer - Sean Canty - Spector Group (executive architect) - Principal - Scott Spector - IwamotoScott Architecture - Founding Partner - Craig Scott - IwamotoScott Architecture - Project Team - Matthew Kendall