Lower Manhattan National Park

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  • Past Futures, Present, Futures

  • A two part  exhibit at Storefront for Art and Architecture in New York City designed by Leong Leong. The exhibit which runs from 10.06.12 - 11.24.12 displays unrealized visions for New York City by designers and visionaries throughout the cities history. The second phase of the exhibit invited a broad group of designers to revisit these ideas with fresh eyes. 

  • Photo by Naho Kubota
  • Photo by Naho Kubota
  • Photo by Naho Kubota
  • Photo by Naho Kubota
  • Photo by Naho Kubota
  • Geoff Manaugh and myself we given Lebbeus Woods's image of Lower Manhattan. The image shows the East River drained exposing a bedrock canyon running the cities edge. The rules required we not spend more than 10 hours on the image and that the accompanying text not exceed 400 words. 

    Our approach was to provide an explanation for the condition setup by Lebbeus Woods while simultaneously providing a look at how this new space is seen as an asset to the city. Our image is of a trail map for the newly formed Lower Manhattan National Park. The image and text describe how the city meets this new canyon and some of the geological features found within the park.
  • Image by Lebbeus Woods
  • Lower Manhattan National Park

    In 2057, massive flood-control structures protecting New York City from the rising seas required a redirecting of the Hudson and East Rivers northeast, into Long Island Sound. The resulting dams—the construction of which triggered small earthquakes throughout New England—allowed for the draining of the old riverbed south and east of Manhattan, revealing the unearthly geological circumstances on which this archipelagic metropolis sits.

    Following several years of scientific surveys into the mazelike gorges and intersecting cliffsides below—complex terrestrial forms previously buried by the waters and mud at the edge of the city—teams from the Army Corps of Engineers set about clearing the region from more than a hundred thousand years’ worth of silt and debris flowing down from the upper watershed. Even shipwrecks going back to the Colonial era were dredged, blasted, and removed—in some cases, the wrecks’ dried and re-kilned timber used to build houses elsewhere in the city.

    The resulting reclaimed landscape of gorges, cataracts, caves, slopes, and arches was unlike anything seen in another city—as if the Grand Canyon had been discovered suddenly cleaving Shanghai in two. And thus a new National Park was swiftly declared: Lower Manhattan National Park, its name partially inspired by architect Lebbeus Woods, a New Yorker who explored the urban possibilities offered by damming the city’s rivers in a proposal back in 1999.

    By 2076, the nation’s three-hundredth birthday, Lower Manhattan National Park was open to the public, encompassing hiking trails, campsites, interpretive routes, and modern visitors’ centers that unlocked the city’s depths for amateur exploration. For generations, bankers had no idea that, just off the fiscal cliff at the end of their well-known street, the Wall Street Gorges would soon loom, an extraordinary district of trails smelling vaguely of sea salt; or that, within walking distance of Chinatown, switchbacks would lead steeply down into the shadows of a marine void off the Lower East Side. There are the Hudson Caves; the Brooklyn Bridges (a nest of suspension bridges spanning boroughs); Governors Tower (formerly Governors Island); and, of course, the New Wall—the East River Dam itself—now an athletic attraction to people all over the world, lined with climbing routes and ornamental handholds.

    New Yorkers once fearful of the rising waters of climate change now look down into vast canyons surrounding the city, lined with historic plaques explaining how this newest of National Parks was born.
  • Wall St. Detail
  • Chinatown Detail
  • Ellis Tower Detail
  • Jersey Bank Detail
  • More information can be found at Storefront.

    Other contributors include:

    Aaron Jones
    Adria Carbonell
    Alvaro Urbano
    Andreas Angelidakis & Sotiris Vasiliou
    ABRUZZO BODZIAK, Emily Abruzzo & Gerald Bodziak
    AMID.cero9, Cristina Dïaz Moreno & Efrén García Grinda
    Ants of the Prairie, Joyce Hwang
    Archmongers, Margaret Bursa & Johan Hybschmann
    Architecture Commons, Eugene Chang, Eric Ho & Rick Lam
    Arqueología del Futuro/PKMN, Rocio Pina Isla & Carmelo Rodríguez Cedillo
    Arquitectura 911sc, Jose Castillo
    asensio_mah, Leyre Asensio Villoria & David Mah
    Beatrice Galilee
    BIG, Bjarke Ingels
    Bureau des Mesarchitectures, Didier Faustino
    Bureau Spectacular, Jiminez Lai
    SadarVuga, Bostjan Vuga, Andreas Cesarini & Victor Barbalato
    Candy Chang
    Carolina Trigo
    Christy Cheng
    Christian Kerrigan
    RuyKlein, Karel Kelin & David Ruy
    Dennis Maher
    Dread Scott
    Emre Hüner
    dpr-barcelona, Ethel Baraona Pohl & César Reyes Nájera
    Experiments in Architecture and Research (E.A.R.), Jordan Carver
    Fake Industries, Urtzi Grau & Cristina Goberna Pesudo
    Felix Burrichter
    Gaspar Libedinski
    GMG Collective, Kostas Grigoriadis & Eduardo McIntosh
    XEFIROTARCH, Hernan Diaz Alonso
    ikstudio, Mariana Ibañez & Simon Kim
    IwamotoScott Architecture with Benjamin Rice
    Jack Hogan
    W/-- Projects, Jiminie Ha & Pete Deevakul
    JDS, Julien De Smedt
    Jonathan D Solomon
    Leong Leong, Chris Leong & Dominic Leong
    Liam Young
    Lydia Kallipoliti & Sofia Krimizi
    MAS, Philipp von Dalwig
    Nooka, Matthew Waldman & Manuel Oh
    Miguel Robles-Durán
    Mimi Zeiger
    MMX Studio, Jorge Arvizu, Ignacio del Rio, Emmanuel Ramirez & Diego Ricalde
    MODU, Phu Hoang & Rachely Rotem
    MvS Architects, Paul Minifie, Jan van Schaik & Finn Warnock
    N, David Burns, Adrian Lahoud & Sam Spurr
    NABITO Architects & Partners, Ale Faticanti & Bebo Ferlito
    NaJa & deOstos, Nannette Jackowski & Ricardo de Ostos
    Nancy Nowacek
    NAO, Srdjan Jovanovic Weiss
    Office for Political Innovation, Andrés Jaque
    Patrick Tierney
    Patrizia Gravalos
    Pedro Gadanho
    Pep Avilés
    Popular Architecture, Casey Mack
    DRDH Architects, Richard Marks
    Kokkugia, Roland Snooks & Robert Stuart-Smith
    Sam Jacoby
    San Roco, 2A+P, baukuh, OFFICE KGDVS, Salottobuono
    SCHAUM/SHIEH, Troy Schaum & Rosalyne Shieh
    STPMJ, Seung Teak Lee & Mi Jung Lim
    SUPERMANOEUVRE, Iain Maxwell & David Pigram
    Snohetta, Laia Clema, Karli Molter, Samantha Stein & Justin Shea
    SOFTlab, Michael Szivos
    SO-IL, Florian Idenburg & Jing Liu
    Sou Fujimoto Architects
    Space Group, Gro Bonesmo, Gary Bates & Adam Kurdahl
    Spec.Ae, Carla Leitao & Ed Keller with Jillian Crandall
    Sporaarchitects, Adam Hatvani, Tibor Dékány, Orsolya Vadász, Bence Várhidi & Tibor Várady
    Studio Dror, Dror Benshetrit
    Terreform ONE, Mitchell Joachim, Maria Aiolova & Melanie Fessel
    VKN, Giancarlo Valle, Isaiah King & Ryan Neiheiser
    WEATHERS, Sean Lally