Architect says Affirmation Tower’s tapering upside-down appearance ’symbol of minorities putting down roots’

David Adjaye has unveiled plans for a 1,633-foot building in New York which would be the tallest skyscraper in the world by a black architect.

The $3.5bn Affirmation Tower would be the second-tallest tower in the city, after One World Trade Centre.

And it would be the first in Manhattan to be owned by majority black and women-led companies and include the highest occupiable floor in the western hemisphere.

The team working on the skyscraper, which would incorporate a rooftop entertainment centre, includes a general contractor JV that is 35% women-owned.

If the plans go ahead, they will provide a new headquarters for the National Association for the Advancement of Colored People.

Adjaye, who won the RIBA Royal Gold Medal last year, said the building was shaped like a blossoming tree both because of the site constraints and the symbolism of women and minority groups putting down roots. The all-electric building is expected to create more than 50,000 jobs.

SOM’s 1,776-foot One World Trade Centre would continue to be the tallest building in New York.