NYC Information Center
With its cool glass storefront, clean lines and glowing interior, the Official NYC Information Center in Midtown could easily be mistaken for a modern art gallery housing the latest multimedia installation. In truth, it is New York City’s groundbreaking new destination for visitors and residents to find all they need to know about what to see and where to go in the City’s five boroughs. By offering a range of compelling, user-friendly interactive tools for locating information, the center eases the process for creating itineraries and navigating through the City.

Media hybrid of architecture and interactive mapping software will dramatically reshape the way NYC visitors and residents navigate the five boroughs. The design, in collaboration with award-winning media design firm Local Projects, is an innovative re-invention of the way visitors and residents plan their New York City itineraries. The new center is fitting of New York City and its residents, and will be a model for visitor information centers around the globe.

The invitation by NYC & Company to completely re-conceive the familiar visitor center experience was a complex challenge, says WXY principal architect Claire Weisz. By working closely with Local Projects, we were able to integrate their sophisticated technology into the interior architecture, without impacting the integrity our design.

WXY has created a new paradigm that eliminates the need for dated print brochures. Alternatively, users can now place digitized pucks on the Interactive Map Tables, which trigger the mapping software and allows them to create custom guidebooks and itineraries of New York City.

The i-shaped glowing digital mirrors that hover above the Smart Tables are guided by the universal symbol for information, a single 'i', and function to draw visitors through the space on an oblique pathway. The mirrors throw a color-based projection on to a fabric screen made of Barrisol which responds to the users choices based on the category of activity selected such as dining, entertainment, lodging, etc.

Once an itinerary is developed, the visitor can then choose to view their travel plans in three formats. The large video wall, located on the rear wall of the information center, is comprised of 16 high definition flat screen monitors that allow visitors to view a dynamic three-dimensional map of their urban itinerary. By placing the digitized puck on the screens designated pylon, a visitors saved search becomes a dramatic cartographic display of the city from above travel route mapped out within it.

Visitors can also use the digitized puck-to-pylon method to obtain their itinerary in hard copy or send themselves an itinerary directly from the Interactive Map Table via email or text to access from their Personal Electronic Device. Alternatively, FAQ Information kiosks are available for simpler searches. Four wall-mounted vertical touch-screen monitors link users to the company website,, for basic inquiries such as famous city landmarks and popular restaurants, etc.

Great attention was given to the lighting of the information centers interior for which WXY created an ambient, adaptable and color-saturated experience. Recessed light coves that run the length of the space infuse the center with a soft, white illumination while the light emitted by the various media displays brighten the interior of without the use of direct lighting.


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