Despite the technical accomplishments that earned the building its distinction as an environmental pioneer, an achievement typical for Foster’s brand of high-tech architecture, there’s something rather brutal about the structure. Rather than engage the base from which it emerges, the tower stands independently. From the outside, a band of rectangular framing separates the diagrid from its base. And from inside the large atrium, one notices that the columns supporting the tower are completely independent, reducing the historic to just an exterior skin. The skylights surrounding the base only accentuate this division.

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