The observation deck at 30 Hudson Yards, also known as ‘Edge’, is the highest outdoor observation deck in the Western Hemisphere. The triangular structure cantilevers 80 ft from the face of the 30 Hudson Yards high-rise (also called Tower A or North Tower), the highest building of the Hudson Yards redevelopment project.
The perimeter of the deck is formed by a 9 ft tall, sloping glass windscreen, allowing for a panoramic view of New York City. Indoor and outdoor floors are partially made of glass and offer the chance to look directly down 100 stories to the streets below.
Due to the plan to modularize the structure, schlaich bergermann partner designed 20 separate free-standing modules to be shipped from Italy and connected at 1,100 ft above ground. The mild steel modules are clad in stainless steel, with aluminum reinforcement. All connections were designed for high adjustability in the workshop and on site – with a limitation to a maximum 3 mm of deviation between modules, due to the demands of the façade maintenance system and the need for visually flat planes in the cladding. The infill modules between the main modules were designed to avoid any cladding clashes during installation.
Integrated stainless steel connections at the main corners of the glass windscreen avoid a clash of the glass panels during wind loads. The windscreen is designed to withstand 4.7 kPa winds, while considering the redundancy event of one glass layer being broken. Four identical glass panels make up the terrace glass floor for ease of replacement. Three independently supported, but connected glass panels make up the “Hull Window” – this is another glass floor and large window combination inside the observation deck.