Nelson Byrd Woltz Landscape Architects is the lead designer for the Public Square and Gardens, a dynamic landscape destination at the center of Manhattan’s largest contemporary urban development. The Square offers large and small scale gathering spaces in cafés, gardens, and plazas at the convergence of the Highline, 11th Avenue, Hudson Boulevard, and the new number 7 Subway station. The landscape coordinates the technical and aesthetic aspects of the public space: civil engineering for storm water management, ADA and emergency access to all areas, structural engineering of the platform over the rail lines below, and connections with the architecture at ground level and above.
In the role of prime consultant, NBW managed the coordination of a complex team of design professionals and utilized the landscape to weave distinct design voices into a single, unifying space. A central formal plaza combines shade trees and bold seasonally expressive horticulture, dramatic fountains and a monumental piece of public art. A virtue of this design solution is the inherent flexibility to host diverse events of varying scales. The Public Square is a central hub for this cutting edge mixed-use development that aspires to provide a template for the future of cities.
Collaborators: Heatherwick Studio, Pine + Swallow, Northern Design, Paul Cowie, Kohn Pedersen Fox Associates PC, L'Observatoire International, CMS Collaborative, Mark Smallridge & Associates, Tony Sinkosky, Design Distill LLC