The new park at 55 Water Street was dedicated last night, and declared open.
Read on, and with pics!
The core idea was to create an urban dunescape, complete with plantings that correspond with the progression from soil, sandy soil, sand, and water. I observed that the park looks and operates like a dune. The escalators are exciting and inviting.
Once you arrive, you can climb right up that dune directly to the water. The plantings and concrete invite strolling and meandering. The view, of course, is gorgeous, particularly at sunset. FDR sounds like a river from that height. The amphitheater was also surprisingly wonderful. There was a little amplification of the string quartet, but the acoustics were wonderful for a little public party, considering we were only a few meters from the roar of FDR.
Two surprises: the construction was average. C+. The concrete was splotchy, the welds weren't ground smooth on the handrails. Obviously, this project was a budget job.
Second surprise: the beacon is unlike anything I've ever seen in a public park. Being under it is a delight, even though it won't protect you from the rain. It's more like being under any of Manhattan's bridges, in that you're inside a cavern of infrastructure. Like an Olafur Eliasson sculpture, the lights are just hanging there, for anyone to see.
And Curbed wins the award for best demonstration of changing-colored-light. The LEDs used can create any color.
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