Smout Allen

Luke Royffe The Balloon Studio, Macy's Inc.

Pier 75, End of West 34th Street, Manhattan, NYC. 

For a single moment each year the hard unbroken facades defining Manhattan’s grid play host to a unique event, an event that brings with it a unparalleled softness to the city. Caught hovering at a junction or reflected in the multitude of glass that surrounds them, the Macy’s Parade Balloons evoke a sense of warmth and wonder within the city. They are an icon of New York’s over zealous grandeur, American to the core, a landmark encapsulated in imagination, they are as much a part of the city as the Empire State Building, the Statue of Liberty and its yellow cabs.

In Celebration of the parade’s centenary Macy’s, Inc. has commissioned the design of a new factory, fulfilment of the brief will require the production of tailored environment, a space optimised for the creation of giant inflatables and their design. It will stipulate that the architecture must reflect the intrigue and spectacle conjured up by the inflation of these gigantic objects. The building must aid in the anticipation and excitement precursing the event, it will become a focal point in the inauguration of each annual parade.

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