Arup Delivers High-Performance Structural Design to Boston Properties for 40-story Tower in Manhattan

Innovative viscous damping system reduced steel required by 10%, resulting in a cost savings of $5 million

Apr 29, 2013, 15:45 ET from Arup

NEW YORK, April 29, 2013 /PRNewswire/ -- Arup, a multidisciplinary engineering and consulting firm with a reputation for delivering innovative and sustainable designs, announced today the substantial completion of the structure and envelope for a one million SF office tower development located in the heart of Manhattan at 250 West 55th Street. Boston Properties hired architect Skidmore Owings and Merrill LLP (SOM) and Arup to design a 40-story tower that includes office space, a green roof, two podium levels, and two basement levels. The tower, which is slated for occupancy in early 2014, was designed to achieve LEED Gold certification.

Arup's design incorporated an innovative viscous damping system into the outrigger and belt truss at the crown of the building. This damping system reduces the building motion during wind storms, and enabled the steel tonnage to be reduced by ten percent, resulting in a cost savings of $5 million. The integration of seven small viscous dampers into the mechanical space at the top of the building preserved valuable space within the building that would have otherwise been occupied by a tuned-mass damper, thereby maximizing rentable space for the landlord, Boston Properties.

"Our experience with Arup as structural engineer for 250 West 55th Street has been nothing but positive. The firm's engineering innovations helped us save $5 million and gave us more usable space per floor," said Robert Schubert, senior vice president of construction at Boston Properties. "The degree of coordination achieved with the Revit and Tekla models was extremely thorough, evidenced by the low number of RFI's received for the entire steel fabrication and erection process.  Arup showed creativity and a real willingness to help us achieve our goals for the design of 250 West 55th Street."

In the last 30 years, Arup has been involved in the design of over 650 tall buildings in more than 45 countries, including Marina Bay Sands Hotel and Resort Towers in Singapore, The Northeast Asia Trade Tower in Seoul Korea, and Torre Reforma in Mexico City.  

About Arup

Arup is the creative force at the heart of many of the world's most prominent projects in the built environment and across industry. Its engineers and consultants deliver innovative projects across the world. Arup opened its first US office 25 years ago, and now employs 1,000 in the Americas. The firm was founded in 1946 with an enduring set of values that fosters a distinctive culture, intellectual independence and collaborative approach. The people at Arup are driven to find a better way to deliver better solutions for their clients. (

Media Contacts

Susan Shelby, FSMPS, CPSM        

Rebecca Maloney, LEED AP, CPSM

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