The Edge Parkhttp://www.shapedscape.com/media/reviews/photos/original/a7/ab/a9/650-Aerial-View-The-Edge-Park-in-Williamsburg-New-York-designed-by-W-Architecture-and-Landscape-Architecture-Alison-Cartwright-Shapedscape-Landscape-Architecture-Matters-68-1438966540.jpg
The Williamsburg waterfront has been dominated by industry for over a century – making it largely off limits to the public. New zoning is changing the public interface with the water's edge by increasing density and emphasizing waterfront access. The Edge Park byseeks to bring people to the river and stretch the river eco-system into the fabric of the community. As landscape architect for both the new residential towers and the public waterfront park, W Architecture and Landscape Architecture had the challenge of ensuring that the towers act not as symbolic fences blocking public access and views of the East River and Manhattan but as gateways to the river and corridors to access classic views of the Manhatttan skyline.
The 'Edge' waterfront emphasizes the confrontation of disparate forces at the waters edge and encourages public use. At the river's edge the city grid and the river's ecosystem converge, mingle, and clash: the street turns into a pedestrian greenway, a garage is surmounted with a sloping lawn, piers reach gently into the water from deep within the park and stone riverbank contrasts with concrete bulkhead.
The synthesis and separation of private and public space, and architecture and ecology required a complex series of collaborations with community groups, the developer, the city government, the parks department, and various engineers. The park was a critical part of the approval for the adjacent residential towers project, as part of NYC Mayor Bloomberg's vision of 'transforming' the waterfront into the sixth borough, giving the previously inaccessible rundown industrial sites back to the community. The park also played a role in the LEED Silver rating certification for the project, having turned 50% of the former industrial site and part of the streets in permeable surfaces, while using mostly native species which greatly improve rainwater management and maintenance for the site.
Images courtesy of W Architecture and Landscape Architecture. Photography by Alison Cartwright.
- Landscape Lighting
- Native Plants
- Rainwater Management
- Urban Design
Closest transit station is the East River Ferry right at The Edge or the bus at Kent Av/N 6 St.