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Amazon HQ2 Metropolitan Park: Exteriors & Lobbies by ZGF (Shoot 1) 

Photographer: Magda Biernat 

Architect/Designer: ZGF Architects

Client: ZGF Architects

Location: Arlington, VA

Shoot Date: 
May 17, 2023 
In lieu of a corporate power statement, Amazon envisioned a second headquarters that would enhance an existing neighborhood. Arlington residents who participated in a seven-month review process similarly expressed a desire for an HQ2 that strengthens the public realm while improving connectivity, mobility, and accessibility. ZGF’s brief was clear: to design an environment centered around the urban experience.

As part of its commitment to Arlington, Amazon funded the renovation and expansion of Met Park. ZGF collaborated with James Corner Field Operations to transform an underused green into an amenity for the whole community. Today, visitors to this oasis can explore the many hidden art pieces embedded along its forest walk, climb the tactile jungle gym on the children’s playground, allow their dogs to run off-leash in the designated small and large dog parks, lounge on the central green, and picnic in the community garden. Situated on a knoll at the park’s heart, “Queen City” is a permanent artwork by DC-artist Nekisha Durret that invites passersby to learn the history of a black community who thrived in Arlington prior to being displaced by the Pentagon’s construction.

Curated open space extends well beyond the park and continues along the streetscapes surrounding and permeating the site. New protected bike lanes and intersections—the first in Arlington County—shape a cyclist-friendly environment. Local retailers, cafés, and a daycare occupy 50,000 square feet along Merlin and Jasper’s ground level, introducing new services to South Arlington while enriching the pedestrian experience. (ZGF) 
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