Urban Design

Green Design, Upper West Side , Urban Design

79th street boat basin, upper west side, houseboats

Photo by Jim Henderson on Wikimedia

The city is moving forward on restoring the Upper West Side’s 79th Street Boat Basin as a waterfront resource for the community. In December 2019, the Parks Department unveiled a $90 million proposal to reconstruct docks damaged by previous storms, add additional boating berths to increase capacity, make the area more resilient to climate change, and expand ecological research and education. To make this possible, the entire marina will be dredged to enable vessels to navigate it at all tidal cycles. With support from the local Community Board and many residents, the plan is now moving ahead, with construction expected to commence in 2023.

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Architecture, Major Developments, Midtown East, Urban Design

175 Park Avenue, looking northeasy. Copyright Miysis SPRL / Courtesy of Skidmore, Owings & Merrill

In February, we got our first look at the 1,646-foot tower proposed for the Grand Hyatt site next to Grand Central. Designed by Skidmore, Owings & Merrill (SOM), the sustainable mixed-use building would rise 83 stories and become the second-tallest tower in NYC behind One World Trade Center. Though 175 Park Avenue takes advantage of the Midtown East Rezoning, developers RXR Realty and TF Cornerstone are still seeking several special zoning permits, including those for hotel use and added height in exchange for transit and infrastructure improvements. To obtain these variances, the project has now entered the city’s Uniform Land Use Review Process (ULURP), and with it, has revealed several new renderings.

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Green Design, Lower East Side, Urban Design

+ POOL, designed by Family New York & PLAYLAB, INC. Rendering by Luxigon

A plan to build a swimming pool on the East River is finally moving forward after being in the works for over a decade. In an Instagram post published on Saturday, the nonprofit +POOL announced the group had received confirmation from the city to proceed with due diligence on their project: a floating, self-filtering pool on the south side of Pier 35 on the Lower East Side.

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Midtown West, Urban Design

Renderings by FXCollaborative

It’s been two years since Macy’s first floated the idea of building a 700-950 foot office tower atop its Herald Square flagship, and it looks like the plan is getting closer to reality thanks to a $235 million private investment in transit accessibility and public infrastructure. This includes upgraded subway access, improved transit connections, ADA-accessible elevators, and a modernized car-free Herald Square and Broadway Plaza.

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Morningside Heights, Upper West Side , Urban Design

Photo of Riverside Park by Momos on Wikimedia

The city announced this week plans to provide $348 million in funding for the rehabilitation of major infrastructure in Riverside Park, marking one of the largest investments at the waterfront park since the 1930s. The project restores the “overbuild,” a series of bridge structures built over the Amtrak tunnels between West 72nd and West 123rd Streets. The deteriorated structure has damaged pathways and affected the park’s usability, according to the city.

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Landscape Architecture, Urban Design, Williamsburg

Rendering courtesy of NYC Parks

Construction officially kicked off this month at a new section of the Bushwick Inlet Park in Williamsburg. The long-awaited two-acre green space, dubbed 50 Kent, is scheduled to open in April 2022. Designs of the parkland, which was promised by the city as part of the 2005 rezoning of the Greenpoint and Williamsburg waterfront, were approved in 2018, but work stalled due to COVID-related budget cuts, as Brooklyn Paper reported.

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Midtown West, Urban Design

All photos courtesy of NY State Parks on Flickr

A former New York City Police Department tow-pound on the Hudson River will open as a public park this summer, more than 20 years after the state designated the lot as future open space. Gov. Andrew Cuomo on Wednesday said work at Pier 76 has already begun, with an expected opening date as early as June 1. The plan for the 5.6-acre park aligns with the governor’s ambitious $51 billion redevelopment of over 100 acres of Midtown West, announced earlier this year.

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Architecture, Major Developments, Urban Design, Williamsburg

All renderings courtesy of James Corner Field Operations and BIG- Bjarke Ingels Group

The proposal to construct two mixed-use skyscrapers and a public beach on the North Brooklyn waterfront is moving forward, although with an updated design, timeline, and name. As first reported by Brooklyn Paper, Two Trees Management is preparing to start the city’s uniform land use review procedure (ULURP) in the coming weeks for its project “River Ring,” which includes two huge towers designed by Bjarke Ingels with more than 1,000 units of housing, a YMCA, and an environmentally-conscious park with a cove and beach.

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Architecture, Long Island City, Urban Design

All renderings by CAZA

First spotted by CityRealty, this mixed-use proposal for the Long Island City waterfront is part futuristic, part industrial, and part sustainable. The architects at Brooklyn-based studio CAZA conceptualized a plan for a swath of land just north of the site that was almost home to Amazon. Called Long Island City Oyster, their development would include an office tower, residential tower, and low-scale residential village. More distinctly, it would also include year-round indoor and amenities such as a waterfront ice skating rink that converts into a pool, a restored oyster-bed wetland, a sandy beach, and a ferry landing.

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Midtown, Transportation, Urban Design

Can Times Square ever be completely car-free?

By Devin Gannon, Tue, November 10, 2020

Rendering courtesy of 3deluxe

It’s been over ten years since cars were first banned in some sections of Times Square. Is it time for additional street closures along bustling Broadway? In a new design study, the Germany-based architecture firm 3deluxe has reimagined Times Square to prioritize pedestrians and cyclists, trading vehicular traffic lanes for recreational activities, landscaped features, and public transportation. The concept comes as New York and other cities continue to reexamine the value of safe public space as the fight to control the coronavirus pandemic continues.

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