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Thread: Riverside Park South

  1. #61

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    Needs more trees.

  2. #62

    Default Finish the park

    Extell needs to finish the park and do it soon. The area between the waterfront park (that has been completed and is gorgeous) and Riverside Blvd is one giant construction pit. I know that Extell has many more buildings to build at the southern end of Riverside South, but finishing the park--at least in front of the Avery and Rushmore--should be a priority. That was the promise made to the residents of those buildings who spent a lot of money to live there.

  3. #63
    Disgruntled Optimist lofter1's Avatar
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    Promises, promises . Did you get the Extell promise in writing?

    If you take a look at the space between Riverside Park South and the buildings to the north of Avery / Rushmore you'll see that there is a large swath of steep land that has neither been improved as parkland or built upon -- and the same fate will probably befall the land directly in front of the Avery / Rushmore for quite some time to come.

    No one will properly develop or plant that land on the outside hope that it will be dug up to de-construct and bury the elevated Hiway -- but that won't happen for at least a generation or two.

  4. #64

    Default Finish the Park

    Not every promise needs be "in writing" to be enforceable. Look at the ad for the Rushmore in today's Sunday NYT: "nestled between two parks." Extell is expressly marketing the Rushmore and Avery on the promise of a park being built between Riverside Blvd and the Hudson. Also, the tunnels for the below-grade portion of the highway are already being built under Riverside Blvd. The tunnels form the decking for Riverside Blvd. I heard (from a reliable source) 2010 as the date for the completion of the park, but that remains to seen with the City's budget crisis because the project involves the NYC Dept of Parks.

  5. #65

    Default Next phase to begin??

    A couple buldozers came over yesterday and razed and leveled the fill between 65th and 67th street by Riverside Boulevard. Anyone know whats going on? Are they starting the next phase?

  6. #66

    Default 4 guys: bulldozer, backhoe, steamroller, and dump truck

    I asked people around what is being done. Nobody who lives around there knows. Most of the people I spoke to were unaware that even a tunnel had already been built from the Avery to the southern portal (almost 900 feet long).

    I spoke to a representative of the landscapers on Thursday. He said they were sodding the berm. "You'll like it," he said.

    I asked about the construction for the southbound tunnel. He responded that the tunnel is a long way in the future.

    They're also building a dog run along the retaining wall at the south end of the berm. One of the residents said that it should be finished before the end of July.

    It just seemed strange that they ripped up that beautiful park (that nobody could enter) in order to build...another park.

  7. #67

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    No End to Miller Time at Riverside South?


    Extell tunnels onward in long-waited bid to bury West Side highway,
    but project may still take decades




    Construction is underway for a tunnel under Riverside South (center right) to replace
    the Miller Highway with an extension of Riverside Park.
    Courtesy Thomas Balsley Associates


    In recent years, New Yorkers have seen parkland burgeon along the Hudson River, nowhere more expansively than at Riverside Park South, where boardwalks, overlooks, and marsh grasses wind along the water’s edge. But the beauty of this new landscape between 59th and 72nd streets is blighted by an elevated stretch of the West Side Highway that spews noise, fumes, and debris onto the park below.

    Unbeknownst to passing rollerbladers, Extell Development, which is completing the new park as part of its Riverside South complex, has quietly been building a whopping chunk of infrastructure to bury this noxious stretch of road: a $60 million tunnel shell between 61st and 65th streets. It is one of the first pieces of a decades-old plan to sink the elevated structure, known as the Miller Highway, and extend the park from Riverside South’s dozen-odd new towers to the river in a monumental, 3/4-mile-long public space.

    The removal of the highway, which would be topped with park from roughly 61st to 70th streets, has been a dream of planners and community advocates since the project’s 1991 masterplan, led by Skidmore, Owings & Merrill and based on a plan by Paul Willen and Daniel Gutman, with landscape design by Thomas Balsley Associates. That plan, devised for the Trump Organization, the original developer of the 77-acre Penn Central railyards site, calls for the highway to be buried below Riverside Boulevard, a new access road that runs west of the towers.

    Balsley's rendering of the park with the highway still intact.

    At the time of the project’s 1992 approval, it was understood that the highway relocation would ultimately require public transportation funds. But there was a catch: In order to secure certificates of occupancy for the first towers at the north end of the site, the developer had to deliver the waterfront park as called for in the masterplan. So instead of waiting around for public funds—and a public process that could drag on for years—Trump began building Riverside Boulevard and the new park.

    Enter Extell, which acquired the remaining undeveloped land from 65th to 59th streets in 2005. To continue building its new towers, Extell needed to build the first section of tunnel—hence its $60 million investment. The developer is also working on an upland section of park stretching north from 65th street to be built atop a southbound portion of tunnel. Final plans for that segment are being completed by Thomas Balsley, who has designed all of the 26-acre waterfront park in a series of complicated maneuvers around the hulking Miller Highway.

    “It’s a chess game,” explained Balsley of the design. “The point is not to build anything that would get ripped out later. So we had to design the upland park and design the waterfront park, knowing what would happen between those two things when we take the highway out of the equation. It was crystal-ball design work.”

    The park after a stretch of the highway from roughly 61st Street to 70th Street has been buried and covered over with stepped parkland.

    A prime impediment was the 35-foot elevation change from Riverside Boulevard to the river, at the base of which the highway now runs. Balsley’s solution is to split the park into three distinct spatial experiences. On the upland section, a narrow ribbon of landscape overlooks the water. The riverfront segment is more adventurous, with naturalized riparian edges, lush plantings, and a variety of overlooks and coves. Connecting the two is a big, sloping lawn with wooded edges in the tradition of Riverside Park, creating a transition between the community-scaled upland and the more civic-scaled waterfront.

    Completion of that middle segment, however, remains contingent on the Miller’s re-routing. Though an environmental impact statement for the highway relocation was finished in 2002 by the state Department of Transportation, and the move was subsequently authorized by the Federal Highway Administration, the Miller teardown still awaits engineering and design work, not to mention the estimated $400 million needed for the relocation, a sum certain to require federal assistance.

    It also remains to be seen how Extell’s plans for the southern portion of the site between 59th and 61st streets, where it has proposed a cluster of towers designed by Christian de Portzamparc, might affect the highway’s fate. The project is currently undergoing public review and recently drew opposition from Borough President Scott Stringer.


    Visitors recline at one of the park's pavilions designed by Balsley.


    According to Daniel Gutman, the Miller’s predicament can be traced to the 1991 agreement between the city, state, developer, and civic groups, which called for the highway to be relocated concurrently with development of the new park. But it never stipulated who would fund the new highway, and the state Department of Transportation takes the position that the road has at least another 30 years of life left in it. “There’s no way this highway is going to get moved in the near future unless some other source of funds is found, and so far none is available,” Gutman told *AN.

    “I don’t know if it will ever happen,” said Cheryl Huber, deputy director of New Yorkers for Parks, a member organization of the Riverside South Planning Corporation. “It seems like one of these debates that will possibly go on forever.”

    Jeff Byles

    Copyright © 2003-2010 | The Architect's Newspaper, LLC.

  8. #68

    Default

    The elevated highway must go. My friend used to live in Riverside South, and when one walks on the street adjacent to the highway, it is clear that it is a complete POS.

    This area has the potential to be magnificent park land for all to enjoy, but it currently sucks wang.

  9. #69
    Disgruntled Optimist lofter1's Avatar
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    Start passing the collection plate.

  10. #70

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    That stretch never really bothered me. It's an urban area and the highway provides a decent cover for basketball courts and such. They really did a nice job with that stretch of park. If any part of the West Side Highway were buried or rerouted, I would prefer the section further north, around the Cloisters and Van Courtland Park. That is already a fantastic park, but it could be phenomenal if it adjoined the River.

  11. #71
    Build the Tower Verre antinimby's Avatar
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    I know this sounds crazy but one day in the very, very, very distant future when automotive traffic on the Miller Hwy is moved underground, couldn't they then convert the existing elevated structure to train/rail use?

    Voilà! Now you've got a new subway/light rail/El line going up the Westside Manhattan where there is now no subway service and it wouldn't cost as much to build as a new subway line is from scratch.

    (God, I'm brilliant. Too bad I don't use it for my own financial benefit.)

  12. #72
    Disgruntled Optimist lofter1's Avatar
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    Sure, if you want an elevated train that runs 10 blocks.

  13. #73
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    This area is shaping up nicely.

    I agree with antinimby that it could use more transit. I'd favor a Far West Side busway down West End/Eleventh from 70th Street through Midtown to Chelsea, and down West Street through the Financial District to the Battery.

  14. #74
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    Remnants of an Industrial Past, Now Gone

    NY TIMES
    City Room Blog
    By COREY KILGANNON
    January 18, 2011, 3:20 PM


    Pier D until recently.

    WNY Thread: The float bridges of the New York Central Railroad

    Many New Yorkers are attached to their city’s gritty industrial past, especially when it is juxtaposed with newer gleaming luxury structures.

    A prime example, at least until a few days ago, could be found on the Hudson riverfront near Riverside Park on the West Side, around 64th Street.

    There, twisted skeletons of two piers that had long ago burned down jutted out of the river, gnarled-iron sculptures looking back from the past at gleaming Trump Place, a towering bulkhead of large luxury residential buildings on the waterfront from 59th to 72nd Streets.

    For all their rough and rusty condition, the piers seemed to be elegantly melting into the water. They were lauded by passers-by, preservationists and governmental leaders.

    But now they are gone, quickly removed over the long, frigid weekend by two cranes and several huge refuse bins on barges.


    Pier C a tangled spaghetti-like mass of rusting steel

    “It is not possible to stabilize or preserve Pier D in its current condition,” Vickie Karp, a parks department spokeswoman, said of the larger of the two structures. “It is being removed before it collapses into the Hudson River, causing a hazard to navigation. It is prudent to remove it now, while the funding is in place and work is ongoing in the surrounding area, before any such collapse occurs.”

    Pier D, at 64th Street, was known to some as the “Frank Gehry Pier” for its resemblance to that architect’s structures. Its neighboring pier at 62nd Street, a tangled mess of steel nicknamed the “Spaghetti Pier,” was called “an amazing sight” by the landscape architect Thomas Balsley, who helped design the Riverside South project, one that included a viewing station overlooking the piers.

    Adrian Benepe, the parks commissioner, had been a fan of the piers. In 2003, when cranes had begun to remove the piers, Mr. Benepe rushed to the site and ordered work stopped, and later helped negotiate an agreement to temporarily preserve them.

    These monuments to the city’s industrial past were even included as bragging points in brochures of several luxury apartment buildings with Hudson views.

    “They were accidental treasures,” said Roland Lewis, president of the Metropolitan Waterfront Alliance. “They were whimsical, beautiful pieces of history right in front of you. Everyone I’ve ever spoken to about it had good things to say about them.”

    Regarding the timing of the demolition, he said, “If they were worried about community protest, they certainly picked an opportune time to take them down – when you’re doing something unpopular, you often try to do it fast, and at odd times.”

    Pier D was built of wood in the 1880s, then rebuilt with a steel frame after a fire in 1922. It once served the New York Central Railroad’s sprawling 60th Street Yard. The pier was abandoned after a June 1971 fire.

    The piers were scheduled for demolition as a part of the original plans for the Riverside Park South. On Tuesday, Ms. Karp said, “Out of appreciation for its accidental sculptural forms, the structure was left in place over the last eight years, without any remedial work.”

    After Mr. Benepe halted the demolition in 2003, he helped negotiate an agreement to let parks department officials conduct a study on the effects of pier shade on the fish habitats below. At that time, he said that the state Department of Environmental Protection, and some federal agencies, favored the demolition, and that the demolition was part of a uniform land-use review procedure by the city’s Planning Department.

    Mr. Benepe called the piers “as good as anything created by artists in the last few decades,” but he allowed that some officials called the piers unstable and said they were slowly collapsing into the water. He called their preservation ”a romantic notion that may not be practical.”

    © 2011 The New York Times Company

  15. #75
    NYC Aficionado from Oz Merry's Avatar
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    Remnant of an Industrial Past, Now Gone

    By COREY KILGANNON


    A crane dismantling the last remains of an old Hudson River pier on Monday.
    A 2007 view of the pier is below.


    Many New Yorkers are attached to their city’s gritty industrial past, especially when it is juxtaposed with newer gleaming luxury structures.

    A prime example, at least until a few days ago, could be found on the Hudson riverfront near Riverside Park, around 64th Street.

    There, the twisted skeleton of a pier that had long ago burned down jutted out of the river, a gnarled-iron sculpture looking back from the past at gleaming Trump Place, a towering bulkhead of large luxury residential buildings on the waterfront from 59th to 72nd Streets.

    For all its rough and rusty condition, the pier seemed to be elegantly melting into the water. It was lauded by passers-by, preservationists and governmental leaders.
    But now it is gone, quickly removed over the long, frigid weekend by two cranes and several huge refuse bins on barges.

    “It is not possible to stabilize or preserve Pier D in its current condition,” Vickie Karp, a spokeswoman for the parks department, which removed the pier. “It is being removed before it collapses into the Hudson River, causing a hazard to navigation. It is prudent to remove it now, while the funding is in place and work is ongoing in the surrounding area, before any such collapse occurs.”

    Pier D, at 64th Street, was known to some as the Frank Gehry Pier for its resemblance to the architect’s structures. It once stood next to another pier, at 62nd Street, a tangled mess of steel nicknamed the Spaghetti Pier. The latter pier was called “an amazing sight” by the landscape architect Thomas Balsley, who helped design the Riverside South project, which included a viewing station overlooking the piers.

    Adrian Benepe, the parks commissioner, had been a fan of the piers. In 2003, when cranes had begun to remove Pier D, Mr. Benepe rushed to the site and ordered the work stopped. He later helped negotiate an agreement to temporarily preserve it.

    This monument to the city’s industrial past was even included as a bragging point in brochures of several luxury apartment buildings with Hudson views.

    “They were accidental treasures,” said Roland Lewis, president of the Metropolitan Waterfront Alliance. “They were whimsical, beautiful pieces of history right in front of you. Everyone I’ve ever spoken to about it had good things to say about them.”

    Regarding the timing of the Pier D demolition, he said, “If they were worried about community protest, they certainly picked an opportune time to take them down — when you’re doing something unpopular, you often try to do it fast, and at odd times.”

    Pier D was built of wood in the 1880s, then rebuilt with a steel frame after a fire in 1922. It once served the New York Central Railroad’s sprawling 60th Street Yard. The pier was abandoned after a June 1971 fire.

    It was scheduled for demolition as a part of the original plans for Riverside Park South. Spaghetti Pier was demolished, but Pier D remained intact until last weekend. On Tuesday, Ms. Karp said, “Out of appreciation for its accidental sculptural forms, the structure was left in place over the last eight years, without any remedial work.”

    After Mr. Benepe halted the demolition in 2003, he helped negotiate an agreement to let parks department officials conduct a study on the effects of pier shade on the fish habitats below. At that time, he said that the State Department of Environmental Conservation, and some federal agencies, favored the demolition, and that the demolition was part of a uniform land-use review procedure by the city’s Planning Department.

    Mr. Benepe called the piers “as good as anything created by artists in the last few decades,” but he allowed that some officials called the piers unstable and said they were slowly collapsing into the water. He called their preservation “a romantic notion that may not be practical.”

    State officials said on Tuesday that removal of portions of the pier above the river bottom did not need local community or public approval.

    Ms. Karp said its demolition was scheduled in conjunction with the parks department’s coming renovation of another rusted relic just up the river: the 69th Street Transfer Bridge, which is listed on the National Register of Historic Places.

    http://cityroom.blogs.nytimes.com/20...past-now-gone/

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