A recruiting station has been a feature of New York’s Times Square since 1946. The commission for a modern successor came with a requirement that the design be created and approved within three months. To meet this deadline Architecture Research Office created an iconic architecture that appealed to all four branches of the Armed Services and holds its own in the Times Square environs. The facades of the building are marked by colored fluorescent lights representing the American flag. This flag is not merely signage but merges with the architecture to become an occupiable symbol.
The building is a glass and stainless steel box set on traffic median where Broadway crosses Seventh Avenue. Fluorescent lights coated in red, white, and blue reflective gels are located within the custom window wall assembly. Both transparent and reflective, depending upon ambient light throughout the day and position of the viewer, Architecture Research Office’s U.S. Armed Forces Recruiting Station states its purpose with great clarity. By night, however, the building hums along to the neon urbanism of 42nd Street, already acknowledged as one of New York’s future landmarks.