New York City is getting serious about future superstorms with $100 million to fund floodwater mitigation

"BIG U" PROPOSED PATH AROUND LOWER MANHATTAN (COURTESY BIG)

“BIG U” PROPOSED PATH AROUND LOWER MANHATTAN (COURTESY BIG)

On August 27th, New York City Mayor Bill de Blasio and the NYC Office of Resilience & Recovery announced plans to spend $100 million to fortify lower Manhattan against future superstorms. The latest proposal calls for green spaces, levees, and floodwalls to protect the area from East 23rd Street to Montgomery Street, and around the northern tip of Battery Park City.

Continue reading after the jump.

Remember the Battery Park City wheatfield? Conceptual artist is back with a horticultural pyramid in Queens

(Courtesy Socrates Sculpture Park)

The Living Pyramid. (Courtesy Socrates Sculpture Park)

 

[Editor’s Note: Socrates Sculpture Park on the Queens waterfront installed The Living Pyramid, a public sculpture by Agnes Denes in May, when this article was originally published. They have just announced that they will extend the life of the sculpture through the end of October. The work is Denes’ first since her iconic Wheatfield – A Confrontation in 1982, sited on a waterfront landfill in what is now Battery Park City in Lower Manhattan. Do not miss this chance to see this important artwork before it comes down next month.]

Monuments of pre-civilization feats in construction and engineering, pyramids are the latest muse of conceptual artist Agnes Denes who, in 1982, transformed what is now Battery Park City into a two-acre wheatfield.

Continue reading after the jump.

New York City Mayor De Blasio and Cardinal Dolan working on plan for affordable housing on church properties

Development, East
Thursday, August 27, 2015
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Mayor Bill de Blasio hosts a meeting with Cardinal Timothy Dolan. (Demetrius Freeman/Mayoral Photography Office)

Mayor Bill de Blasio hosts a meeting with Cardinal Timothy Dolan. (Demetrius Freeman/Mayoral Photography Office)

New York City Mayor Bill de Blasio had some face-to-face time with Cardinal Timothy Dolan this week, and among the topics the duo discussed was affordable housing. In a city of nosebleed-inducing housing prices, Dolan said creating and maintaining affordable housing was “God’s work,” according to AM New York.

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Signs of life: Artist Steve Powers tacks thought-provoking ‘ICY Signs’ around New York City

(Courtesy New York City Department of Transportation)

(Courtesy New York City Department of Transportation)

Manhattan-based artist Steve Powers is offering a non-caffeinated pick-me-up for weary NYC commuters with his pop art–style street signs mounted on light poles around the city. Bearing food-for-thought slogans with themes of life and love against a pictograph or logotype, such as “I get lost to get found” stamped on a briefcase, the signs are designed to inspire smiles and/or introspection.

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Beyer Blinder Belle restoring Marcel Breuer’s Whitney building for 2016 reopening under the Metropolitan Museum

Architecture, East, Preservation
Tuesday, August 25, 2015
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Marcel Breuer peers from the window of the former Whitney Museum in 1967. (Ezra Stoller / Esto)

Marcel Breuer peers from the window of the former Whitney Museum in 1967. (Ezra Stoller / Esto)

The Met Breuer will throw open its doors in March 2016 for the first season of contemporary art programming under the banner of the Metropolitan Museum of Art. Breuer’s iconic building, formerly the Whitney Museum of American Art, is currently being “invigorated by renovations that will support a fluid, integrated experience of art and architecture,” as the Met’s press release proudly declares.

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M. Paul Friedberg & Partners-designed park opens in New York City’s Greenwich Village

(Courtesy Jackie Hlavenka/Rubenstein Associates)

(Courtesy Jackie Hlavenka/Rubenstein Associates)

On Friday, the gates opened at a long-awaited, $10 million park in Greenwich Village. The 16,000-square-foot, triangular-shaped space was designed by Rick Parisi of M. Paul Friedberg & Partners and features hexagonal pavers, benches, colorful water jets, an array of tree and flower species, and an amorphous lawn at its center.

More after the jump.

DDG brings dramatic mountain terrain to its Tribeca condo conversion

DDG's 12 Warren Street. (Courtesy MARCH)

DDG’s 12 Warren Street. (Courtesy MARCH)

DDG, the architecture and development shop in New York City, is known for using natural materials and dressing its buildings with greenery. This has been the case at a slew of its high-end residential projects around the city, such as 41 Bond or 345 Meatpacking. The firm’s latest residential building at 12 Warren Street in Tribeca continues in that tradition—and then some.

Continue reading after the jump.

Exclusive Video> Inside the Empire Stores mid-transformation in Dumbo

Empire Stores.

Empire Stores.

As Dumbo has become one of New York City’s most desirable and upscale neighborhoods, the hulking Empire Stores complex has been a persistent reminder of the neighborhood’s industrial past—before the boutiques, multimillion-dollar apartments, and Brooklyn Bridge Park. The complex—a series of seven buildings—dates back to the 19th century and was originally used to store dry goods, primarily coffee. For decades, it has been positioned in Dumbo like an impenetrable fortress—a barrier between the cobblestone streets and the landscaped waterfront. But that’s about to change.

Watch the video tour after the jump.

UPDATED: Snøhetta and W Architecture does the impossible: It makes the Penn Station area bearable

[Update: While Snøhetta is drawing up the master plan for the area around Penn Station, Brooklyn-based W Architecture and Landscape Architecture, working with Production Glue, designed the new Plaza33.]

Turning the truly miserable blocks around New York City’s Penn Station into a pleasant and calming retreat would appear to be an impossible undertaking. But Vornado Realty Trust—the primary property owner around the station—believes it can do it with the help of some experienced, Norwegian architects. Enter: Snøhetta.

Continue reading after the jump.

This giant ball pit in New York City is all about “the transformative power of play”

Architecture, Art, East, On View
Monday, August 10, 2015
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The BEACH at the National Building Museum. (NOAH KALINA)

The BEACH at the National Building Museum. (NOAH KALINA)

By now you’ve surely seen a friend or relative’s selfie from the massive ball pit at the National Building Museum in Washington, D.C. The installation, dubbed The BEACH, was designed by Snarkitecture and includes nearly one-million all-white, translucent, recyclable plastic balls. It’s like a McDonald’s ball pit, but artsier and probably a little bit cleaner.

Continue reading after the jump.

Meet the architect behind Kanye West’s 50-foot volcano, Los Angeles mansion, and design-savvy baby-proofing

Kanye atop a mountain on his Yeezus tour. (Peter Hutchins / Flickr)

Kanye atop a mountain on his Yeezus tour. (Peter Hutchins / Flickr)

Ironically, there are few surer ways to emerge from obscurity than to be hired by Kanye West. For Romanian architect Oana Stanescu, who designed a 50-foot stage-prop volcano for the rapper’s Yeezus tour, it meant finding a way to reconcile pop culture with utilitarian design.

Continue reading after the jump.

Bringing Street Art Back Downtown: Check out these enormous murals this weekend from New York City’s LoMan Fest

Art, East, On View
Friday, August 7, 2015
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Mural by Tristan Eaton (Courtesy LoMan Festival)

Even as Lower Manhattan has become increasingly filled with luxury condos and scrubbed of its grit, it has retained the legacy and image as a cultural hub. Though many artists who once thrived in downtown have left due to skyrocketing rents and a shrinking stock of available studio and living space, the desire to keep the arts alive there has not withered for some devoted New Yorkers.

Continue reading after the jump.

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