Heatherwick Studio's park on stilts rises on NYC's Hudson River
British firm Heatherwick Studio recently completed one high-profile project near New York City's Hudson River with its Vessel, and is now well on the way to realizing another that's on it. Named Little Island, it will create a new landscaped park above the water that's supported by concrete piles.
First unveiled back in 2014 as Pier 55, Little Island is the product of an architecture competition held by the Hudson River Park Trust and businessman and philanthropist Barry Diller. The project was captured here during the construction phase by photographer Paul Clemence and is expected to be completed in early 2021.
Little Island replaces an old ruined pier and its unusual design is partly inspired by the old wooden supports that remain on the site.
"Interested in the hundreds of old wooden piles which stuck out of the Hudson River as the structural remains of the old piers that had previously existed, the studio wondered if the identity of the new pier could come from focusing on its structural piers," explains Heatherwick Studio. "The idea evolved to take the new concrete piles that would be needed and to continue them out of the water, extending skyward to raise up sections of a green landscape. Fusing as they meet, these individual piles come together to form the topography of the park."
The structure itself consists of a repeating pattern of 280 concrete piles which support large planters. These planters are joined together at varying heights to create an undulating landscape and thousands of tons of soil will host over a hundred different species of indigenous trees and plants suited to the local climate.
In addition to all its greenery, Little Island will also include multiple pathways and viewing areas, an outdoor theater, a smaller performance space, and will host community events and cultural experiences.
Source: Heatherwick Studio