Have you ever seen a unique floating island? Well, this is your chance. This unusual Little Island 'floating park' is located at Pier 55 on the west side of New York City, along the Hudson River.
The topography of the 2.4-acre park features rolling hills, lush greenery and a large entertainment area. What makes it unique, though, is that they are all built upon "pots" that resemble tulips or, to put it more clearly, a woman's high-heeled shoe.
"Components of the pier, nestled among more than 350 species of flowers, trees, and shrubs, include a 687-seat amphitheater and an intimate stage and lawn space, along with dazzling views of other portions of Hudson River Park, New York City, and the Hudson River."
This incredible park was designed by Thomas Heatherwick of Heatherwick Studio. The architecture of the landscape was provided by Matthews Nielsen. The design was inspired by the remains of Pier 54 after it was decimated by Hurricane Sandy in 2012.
Heatherwick Studio explored the idea of designing a new pier that could draw from the remaining wooden piles from Pier 54.
"My studio and I became interested in the remains of the old piers on the west side of Manhattan. Their top surfaces had long gone, leaving only hundreds of ancient structural wooden piles sticking out of the river."
"MNLA's landscape design was conceived as a leaf floating on water – a space that could be both visually surprising and inspiring for New York City," said Heatherwick.
New York City businessman, Barry Diller, was in partnership with the Hudson River Park Trust in 2013. He had the idea to build a public space for the people of New York and those who visit. Most of the funding for the park was provided by The Diller – von Furstenberg Family Foundation, and a proposal was made in 2014.
"In 2013, Barry Diller, in partnership with Hudson River Park Trust leadership, embarked on the unique opportunity to envision a solution for the repair and reactivation of Pier 54, recently damaged by Hurricane Sandy. Diller chose to reimagine an entirely new type of public space for New York, one that would create an immersive experience with nature and art," said a statement from the donors.
The park was opened to the public on 21 May 2021, free of cost. "Every day through 30 September, timed entry reservations will be offered every half-hour starting at 12:00 through the remainder of the day. Once you enter the park, there is no time limit to your stay. 6:00 am to 12:00 pm: No reservations required for entry. We will monitor the park for crowding and safety at these times. 12:00 pm and on: Free timed entry reservations required for entry."