Related’s Stephen Ross kicks off construction on Hudson Yards’ 150-foot climbable ‘Vessel’

April 18, 2017

First Piece of Vessel Installed 04.18.2017 – courtesy of Related-Oxford

The standard for public art spaces has officially reached new heights. Today, the installation has begun on Vessel, an innovative landmark designed by Heatherwick Studio at Hudson Yards. As 6sqft previously wrote, the project’s idea stems from Related Companies‘ chairman Stephen Ross, who chose Heatherwick to design the $200 million (up as of today from the original $150 million estimate) large-scale piece of art. After being fabricated and constructed in Monfalcone, Italy, the first ten pieces of the 150-foot-tall steel structure arrived in January at the Port of Newark via ship and then traveled across the Hudson River. And as of this morning, Ross was on site to mark the first of these massive components (they each weigh close to 100,000 pounds) being put into place by crane.

thomas heatherwick, stephen ross, related companies, the vessel, vessel, hudson yards, public art

Vessel by Thomas Heatherwick, Hudson Yards public art, Heatherwick Studios, NYC public art
Renderings via Heatherwick Studios

The massive structure, or the “365-day Christmas tree” as Ross once described it, will be able to hold 1,000 visitors at a time. As the centerpiece of the five-acre Hudson Yards Public Square and Gardens, Vessel will have 154 interconnecting flights of stairs, 2,500 individual steps, and 80 landings. The structure will rise from a 50-feet in diameter base which will widen to 150 feet at the top. Plus, a one-mile vertical climbing experience will offer views of the West Side.

The “only thing better is winning the Super Bowl,” ross said as he held onto one of the Vessel pieces, with the Shed rising behind him. Photos via 6sqft.

At today’s groundbreaking, Ross revealed that “The Vessel” name is merely a placeholder, as New Yorkers will ultimately come up with the official name. He said Related will launch a naming competition, ultimately narrowing it down to three finalists. He also explained that it won’t be a “static piece of art,” but will be a place where the public can participate (“We’ll probably have a few races on there… who can do it in the fastest time,” he said).

New Yorkers can witness the progress of Vessel from the High Line and from Hudson Park and Boulevard at West 34th Street. The remaining 65 pieces (there are 75 in total) will arrive in the coming months. It has an expected completion date at the end of this year and will officially open to the public in the Fall of 2018, along with the Public Square and Gardens and a one-million-square-foot retail center.


Photos and video via 6sqft; Renderings via Heatherwick Studios

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