Development on Governors Island isn’t slowing down any time soon. With construction of the new park by West 8 well underway, the Trust for Governor’s Island has moved on to the next project: the south part of the island. The organization has issued a Request for Expressions of Interest (RFEI) for development of 33 acres. The organization is inviting developers, non-profits, and institutions to submit ideas ranging from commercial and educational to cultural.
Posts tagged with "Governors Island":
On Monday, the Trust for Governors Island released a request for proposals, calling on developers to suggest meaningful uses for 40 of the former Army and Coast Guard base's historic structures. New York City is in the midst of a $300 million revitalization program that is modernizing the island's infrastructure and re-sculpting its landscape in order to transform it into a major recreational destination. The RFP seeks to bring private investment into the mix in a way that will create a sustainable economic future for the public park. In that spirit, the Governors Island Alliance has released a list of nine criteria for evaluating proposals. The criteria favor uses that enhance the public space, protect the historic character of the buildings, connect with the waterfront, and encourage a diversity "of people and price points." Details can be found here.
Each year, the AIANY's Emerging New York Architect (ENYA) committee and the Structural Engineers Association of New York bring a whimsical, wondrous, and often absurd pavilion to New York's Governors Island as part of the FIGMENT Festival. This year, FIGMENT held a design competition and 200 designers submitted proposals. The newly announced City of Dreams Competition winner for 2013 is Brooklyn-based Studio Klimoski Chang Architects and their sustainably-minded Head in the Clouds pavilion, comprised of metal rods, and thousands of plastic milk jugs and water bottles. Head in the Clouds is really a collection of 120 "pillows" joined together to create a bumpy cloud filtering light into an occupiable space below. Designers Jason Klimoski and Lesley Chang will partner with local schools and organizations to collect the 53,780 needed milk jugs and water bottles. From outside the pavilion, the array of plastic bottles will appear sparkling white, but inside with the help of a little water and blue-tinted water coloring, light shining through the pavilion will radiate in a variety of shades of blue. The pavilion will be built and displayed on Governors Island during the summer of 2013 pending necessary permitting and fundraising. At the end o the summer, the pavilion will be recycled to help offset its carbon footprint. You can donate to the pavilion-building effort at the FIGMENT website. Four other finalists were named in the competition and their proposals can be seen below: A cloud, in a tree by SAMPLES, Julien Boitard and Richard Nguyen, the Enneper Pavilion by Maria Mingallon, Fodder Form Pavilion by HuycKurlanDowling, Teddy Huyck, Alexis Kurland and Conner Dowling, and For Rent by MTWTHFSS, Ed Blumer and Pete Storey.
Figment NYC is an annual celebration of arts and culture that takes place on Governors Island from June 9-10. Now in its sixth year, Figment provides New Yorkers with an interactive space to participate in the arts, with volunteer artists collaborating on works that transform the environment and the public’s perception. With visual art, music, performance, and installation works, the event will provide the community with a forum for emerging artists to engage with the public. This year installations include Face of Liberty by Zaq Landsberg, a 1:1 replica of the face of the Statue of Liberty that one can sit and climb on, and FY-Langes, a digitally fabricated structure made of foam designed by Columbia GSAPP students. As an all-volunteer organization, Figment seeks to provide an antidote to the commercialization of art—built on community rather than commerce, the event hopes to create a shared experience for the public, free of market-based constraints. To make this possible Figment relies on the contributions of community members, so please consider volunteering or making a donation.
In a unanimous decision, the Landmarks Preservation Commission approved the first phase of plans by the Trust for Governors Island to restore and revamp the island. The vision includes a paisley-like landscape by West 8 on the terrace in front of McKim, Mead and White designed Liggett Hall. Way-finding by Pentagram and lighting by Susan Tillotson also made the cut. For a detailed breakdown of the designs click here.
Kids get it. While the adults stand around discussing the merits and aspirations of a large sculpture or installation, kids climb all over it. A few years back, when Richard Serra's Intersections II was installed in MoMA's sculpture garden, toddlers raced between the tilted arcs in a game of hide and seek. More recently, kids playing around Situ Studio's reOrder installation have turned the Great Hall of the Brooklyn Museum into Romper Room. Now, with Storm King bringing in Mark di Suvero sculptures and Figment in town to install their annual golf course and sculpture garden, Governors Island is getting its workout. On Memorial Day weekend some of the artists creating the "Bugs and Features" golf course were still working out some of the kinks with their designs. While many of them addressed the issues of hot sun and island winds, they didn't quite account for the destructive nature of children. Dee Dee Maucher stood quietly pondering her installation, trying to figure out what would make it more kid proof. Two days in and her segment in the the golf course, titled The Composting Micro Bug Food Spiral, was in need repair. Michael Loverich of Bittertang mulled over how to keep the kids from climbing atop Burble Bup, this year's winner of the City of Dreams Pavilion, sponsored in part by the Emerging New York Architect committee of the AIANY and the Structural Engineers Association of New York. "We don’t want the kids, or even adults, to come in and kick it," said Loverich. "We kind of knew that people would be interacting with it, but not so aggressively." Loverich said that he and his partner Antonio Torres were considering installing some preventative climbing measures.
Coming this summer to a Governor's Island near you (as long as you're in New York), the Burple Bup pavilion will fuse natural and synthetic materials to create a sustainable refuge from the sun. Composed of layered earthen strands winding sinuously beneath a translucent floating dome. Designed by Bittertang, the temporary shelter will provide a quiet meditative and social space on the island beginning May 27. Burple Bup is described by its designers as a secret hideout that promotes quiet socializing, the space will also provide a venue for arts and cultural performances. Earthen berms made of fabric tubes filled with bark and soil wind naturally to form a new landscape and sound barrier. Grasses will cover the berms to create a lush landscape suited for relaxation. Individual inflated balloons called "Bups" join together to create a hovering ceiling that filters light with a changing wash of color. After the summer season is finished, the shelter will be disassembled and either recycled or reused. The fabric and soil from the berms will be composted and used for nearby landscaping projects while the inflatable Bups will be distributed to local swimming pools for use as toys during summer 2012. Bittertang's concept was selected from over 80 entries to the City of Dreams Pavilion Competition sponsored by Figment, the Emerging New York Architect Committee of the AIANY, and the Structural Engineers Association of New York. Construction will begin soon, pending approvals and fundraising. (You can donate to the project over here.) The pavilion will be open to the public from May 27 through September 25 and an exhibition of the design will be on display at the Center for Architecture at 536 La Guardia Place from July 18 through September 16.
Double Dutch. First Manhattan, now Governor's Island--the Dutch just can't get enough of New York Harbor. Adriaan Geuze of West 8 talks with author Brian Davis about West 8's proposal for a new public park on "the island next to the island at the center of the world," via Design Observer. No more Jersey Shore? Speaking of the Dutch, oceanography professor Malcolm Brown told WYNC that residents of the New York-New Jersey area should brush up on their dyke-building skills, warning that higher sea levels may come sooner than we think, via Transportation Nation City Center. Planetizen pointed us to a fascinating post on Per Square Mile about Cahokia, a pre-Columbian settlement on the Mississippi, which, until Philadelphia surpassed it ca. 1800, was the largest city in North America. Start Spreading the News. New York: If you can make there...well, it doesn't guarantee you'll make it in Moscow. For whatever it's worth, New York now ranks as the most affordable of the four cities that the world's wealthiest citizens are likely to call home. New York beats out Moscow--yes, Moscow--as well as Hong Kong and London. The Real Deal quotes a study conducted by Savills PLC, an affiliate of Stribling.
After nearly a year of waiting, we've now seen the new designs coming to Governors Island sometime in the future. But there is also some exciting architecture, art, and, most importantly, mini golf coming to the island this summer, part of the fourth annual Figment arts program that has been populating the island with exciting activities and edifices since the park first opened. On Friday, Figment announced the winners of its call for entries for the aforementioned projects, namely an architecture pavilion, 17 sculptures, and a 10-hole mini golf course. Eschewing the flashy forms of the three finalists they beat out, Ann Ha and Behrang Behin took a creative yet affordable approach with their winning Living Pavilion, tethering together milk crates to create planters for a garden that proceed to fold in on themselves, forming a wave-like tunnel sodded with grass. Check out the architecture finalists plus a few of the winning sculptures after the jump.
Even with last week's heat wave making it feel like July in the city, it will still be seven weeks before that oasis in New York Harbor, Governor's Island, opens for the season on June 5. But there's still plenty of reason to celebrate like summer's here, as the city reached its anticipated deal with the state for control of the 172-acre island yesterday. The city will now be responsible for the development and operation of all but 22 acres of the former Coast Guard base purchased for $1 from the federal government in 2003, whose National Parks Service remains responsible for a small historic district on the northern section of the island. This paved the way for the rather quiet unveiling today of the 87-acre final master plan designed by West 8, Rogers Marvel, Diller Scofidio + Renfro, Mathews Nielsen, and Urban Design+, which had been under lock in key since last spring, when the proposal was completed but held up by all the fighting over the island's, uh, governance. The thrust of the problem was largely a disagreement about how to best spend dwindling state funds, which led to upstate ambivalence toward the flashy park project—Governors Island almost didn't even open in 2009 after Governor Paterson initially withheld about a third of the $18 million annual operating budget. At the time, the design team had put in more than a year of work, with an expected unveiling in May that never came. In a wide-ranging piece in The New Yorker last August, Nick Paumgarten revealed that the designs had actually been under lock and key since then on the island, and now they've finally been unveiled online at a new-ish site. New-ish because they're are posts dating from May 8, 2009, confirming the presumed unveiling, along with another from April 8, 2010, suggesting that yesterday's announcement may have been worked out in advance, though we had also heard it was a rather abrupt agreement, hence the press conference scheduled for 6 o'clock on a Sunday night. As for the plan itself, in the past it was expected to cost upwards of $100 million to execute, though it will no doubt be higher in the end, plus another $30 million annually to operate, though that money would come from an outside source, quite possibly NYU dorms or biotech labs, though an agreement with the feds stipulates no residential development or casinos. All this for a 40-acres of park land plus the 90-acre historic island to the north, all encompassed in a 2.2-mile promenade. We'll have more to say about the designs in a day or two, but until then you can kick around the aforementioned website, which is almost as impressive as the place itself.
Among the revelations in Nick Paumgarten's recent meandering piece for The New Yorker was that the designs for the park had actually been completed months ago and are under lock-and-key within the former Coast Guard grounds, awaiting the stabilization of Albany—sometime in 2012, perhaps?—for a proper unveiling. The other piece of news that struck us was that Leslie Koch, the director of GIPEC who had fought to have the island put back on maps it had been excised from decades prior, had gone so far as to convince the notorious Google Street View car to come over to the island so people could explore the place inside-out, in-season and out. (The park closes the second weekend of October.) Well, upon reading The New Yorker story, we went online to see for ourselves, but were dismayed that the magazine's vaunted fact-checking department had somehow let us down. Turns out that wasn't exactly the case. Thanks to Curbed, we were alerted to the fact that the Google car had indeed been on the island, as the picture above from the Governors Island Blog proves. The actual Street View did not go online until yesterday, though. Check it out for yourselves, and while you're there, see if you cant turn up some of those models of the new park.
The physical distance that separates Governors Island from most New Yorkers often offsets the draw and mystery of the place. This summer, however, everyone has a new reason to make the mini-pilgrimage—only 10 minutes by ferry—to the island that was for so many years off-limits. An art installation dubbed PLOT09: This World & Nearer opened to the public on June 27th and features artwork by 19 international artists. The site-specific works take visitors on a tour of the island and inside abandoned buildings, including an empty church. The artists had their pick of the place. Once they chose their site, they worked to interpret the island’s (primarily military) history, as well as its current “no-place” status, meaning it does not belong to any one group, explained the organizers. Themes explored include transcendent experiences, bizarre phenomena, uncertain futures, travel, and time. The Mark Beasely-curated installation is satisfying, though it was undoubtedly helped by the quality of the site. One request for future installations: less video art and more work highlighting the architecture and surroundings. Those that did that were the most engaging, while the video art fell flat in the context of the site. Here AN brings you a photo preview of the installation. Go any weekend this summer, the ferry is free. Bring a picnic basket and maybe even your bike—or rent one there—and enjoy.