Thursday, October 20, 2005

55 Water Street Coverage Round Up

I've seen a ton of coverage of the newly-dedicated elevated park at 55 Water Street - a great example of an ugly, wasted plaza being transformed into a useful and vibrant public space, complete with stunning views and an amphitheater that will host year-round public events. The centerpiece of the redevelopment is a 50 foot lantern-like structure called the Beacon of Progress that is equipped with embedded LED lights that can be configured in colorful arrays to coordinate with holidays and seasons.

The concept of the landscaping of the park is to create an "urban dunescape" which it appears to successfully accomplish.

Tropolism has some interesting
insight into the project, as its author, Chad Smith, actually helped judge the competition for the design of the park. It is interesting to note that after seeing the finished project, Smith was even more blown away by the Beacon. However, he has points out that several elements were cut from the original plan for budgetary reasons, and claims that the quality of the construction is underwhelming.

Curbed has been keeping
close tabs on the dedication, and offers up some impressive photos of the Beacon's various lighting schemes.

There is a whole discussion thread chronicling the construction of the project
here, and a NY Times piece that gives you some more background on 55 Water Street (apparently the original plaza was only built as zoning compromise of some sort).

And if you didn't get your fix from all of those,
L+L also covers the newest elevated park.

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