The renowned architecture firm of SWA/Balsley has shaped outdoor spaces throughout the world, and many right here in New York City. Whether it is a large park or a small plaza, the firm is dedicated to creating spaces for New Yorkers that make urban life more livable. The firm has designed more than 100 outdoor spaces in New York City alone! We’ve whittled the list down to 5 public parks.
If you are or become an Untapped Cities Insider, you can join a free tour of SWA/Balsley’s newly redesigned landscape architectural studio led by National Design Medal winner Thomas Balsley. This event on January 24th will give guests an inside look at some of the firm’s latest projects and the forces behind making design concepts a reality. Not an insider yet? Become a member today to gain access to free behind-the-scenes tours and special New York City events all year long!
1. Hunters Point South
©Vecerka/Esto, courtesy SWA/BALSLEY and WEISS/MANFREDI
One of the firm’s most recent park projects was the design of Hunters Point South Waterfront Park in Long Island City, a collaboration with Weiss/Manfredi. The first phase of the park opened in 2013 and focused on active recreation areas with amenities like a playground and basketball courts. The second phase of the park, which opened in the summer of 2018, highlights more of the natural aspects of the area and is reflective of the increased awareness of resilience and sustainability that has come to the forefront of waterfront design since Hurricane Sandy. Both phases together comprise eleven acres of waterfront and provide amazing views of the Manhattan skyline. The park pays homage to the site’s former industrial past by incorporating old gantry and railroad tracks into the sustainable and innovative design.