The Stage 2 section of the Highline designed by James Corner Field Operations with Diller Scofidio + Renfro, Piet Oudolf, and Buro Happold has opened to the public. The opening of the new section doubles the length of the public park. After years of planning, design and construction, the High Line is now one mile long, running from Gansevoort Street to West 30th Street, connecting the Meatpacking District, West Chelsea, and Hell’s Kitchen.
Prime Minister Lee at the opening of Senkang Floating Wetland
Over the weekend in Singapore the Senkang Floating Wetland – the largest man-made floating wetland in Singapore was opened to the public by Prime Minister Lee. Developed as part of PUB’s Active, Beautiful, Clean Waters programme, the wetland sitting on the Punggol Reservoir is roughly the size of half a football field.
The wetland links the Anchorvale Community Club to the Sengkang Riverside Park via a bridge on one side, and a boardwalk skimming the water surface on the other, so residents can now enjoy facilities on both banks of the Punggol Reservoir, as well as on the Sengkang Floating Wetland and its boardwalk overlooking the reservoir.
“The wetland is home to about 18 plant species that have been carefully chosen for both their cleansing and aesthetic properties. These plants absorb nutrients and pollutants through their roots. This helps to ensure that the water in this reservoir, an important source of our water supply, stays clean the natural way,” said Mr Tan Nguan Sen, PUB’s Catchment and Waterways Director.
Prime Minister Lee at the opening of Senkang Floating Wetland
The multi-disciplinary team lead by Michael Van Valkenburgh Associates have been selected over the other 4 teams to proceed to the planning stage of the competition. The jury chose the MVVA Team over four others competing to enliven the area around the Gateway Arch and connect it to downtown St. Louis, the Mississippi River and the Illinois bank. Based in New York, MVVA’s portfolio includes the redesign of Pennsylvania Avenue at the White House, the design of Brooklyn Bridge Park and many other prominent projects.
The MVVA Team’s design concept narrative describes their vision for the redesigned park as a “centerpiece of civic culture, an engine of regional economic growth, a showcase for sustainable ecological restoration and a celebration of the national significance of this historic place.”
MVVA TEAM – Historic Landscape Pond
The sponsoring group, the MVVA Team and others will host intensive reviews and workshops this fall to analyze the design concept and conduct a more detailed design exploration. At a minimum, the study will focus on the review of the technical advisory group, the impact on related downtown park properties and the Illinois side of the river, traffic and transportation and federal compliance issues.
For the next stage the MVVA tean will work over a 90-day period, in partnership with the sponsors, the City of St. Louis, the National Park Service and others to further define program requirements; begin developing a design that takes into account the feasibility and practicality of proposed solutions; create a construction budget and fundraising plan; and define the delivery expectations from now until 2015. The sponsors also will study issues relating to cost and construction, traffic, financial resources and federal compliance.
The project will be constructed by Oct. 28, 2015, the 50th anniversary of the completion of the Arch.
For those of you in St.Louis the leaders of the MVVA team will be introduced, along with details on the next stages of the process, at 10:00 a.m., Friday, Sept. 24, 2010, at the Old Courthouse in downtown St. Louis.
Recently the finalists for the ARC International Wildlife Crossing Infrastructure Design Competition were selected to continue into Phase 2 of the competition to develop conceptual designs and 3-D models for a wildlife overpass at West Vail Pass along Interstate Highway 70 near Vail, Colorado. The designs are intended to usher in a new generation of wildlife crossing infrastructure using new methods, new materials, and new thinking to reduce structural costs and increase adaptability and ecological function. The five finalist teams are:
Balmori Associates (New York) with StudioMDA, Knippers Helbig Inc., David Skelly, CITA, Bluegreen, John A. Martin & Associates, and David Langdon.
The Olin Studio (Philadelphia) with Explorations Architecture (Paris), Buro Haphold (London) and Applied Ecological Services.
Janet Rosenberg & Associates (Toronto) with Blackwell Bowick Partnership, Dougan & Associates, and Ecokare International.
Michael Van Valkenburgh & Associates with HNTB Engineering with Applied Ecological Services, Inc.
Zwarts & Jantsma Architects (Amsterdam) with OKRA Landscape Architects, IV-infra and Planecologie
Five additional acres of Brooklyn Bridge Park have been opened to the public, including the first 2,000 feet of the park’s greenway, a 30-foot wide, scenic bikeway and walkway along the East River shoreline. The first section of the new greenway starts at the park entrance at Old Fulton Street and ends at the foot of Pier 2, approximately 2,000 feet to the south.
When complete, Brooklyn Bridge Park will be a sustainably built and operated 85-acre park stretching 1.3 miles along Brooklyn’s East River edge and will include lawns, active recreation fields and courts, a calm water boating basin for non-motorized craft, restored ecological habitats, playgrounds, and a shared bikeway and walkway. Pier 1 opened to the public in March 2010 and Pier 6 opened in June 2010.
TV Gardener Charlie Dimmock helping local children with planting
The first of 4,000 new semi-mature trees are taking root in the London’s Olympic Park with around 100 ash, cherry and hazel trees, grown in Hampshire, already planted. The first of 300,000 wetland plants, grown in Norfolk and Wales for the UK’s largest ever urban river and wetland planting, were laid on the river banks today by Minister for Sport and the Olympics Hugh Robertson, TV Gardener Charlie Dimmock, Olympic Gold medal winner Jonathan Edwards, Olympic Delivery Authority (ODA) Chairman John Armitt and children from the Olympic Park construction crew.
The new reed beds are being created in a large wetland bowl in the north of the Olympic Park, formerly a 100 year old landfill site, where visitors during the Games will be able to relax and watch the action in 2012 on live screens. In legacy the riverside area will be a tranquil space for people and wildlife which will also help protect 5,000 properties in the area from flooding.
Over 30 species of native reeds, rushes, grasses, sedges, wet wildflowers and irises have been grown initially by Salix in its nursery on the Gower peninsular in Wales with around a third grown from cuttings and seeds collected in and around the Olympic Park before construction started in 2008.
You can watch the park turn from brown to green with two new webcams