MGarito | Design | NYC East River Gateway
Making use of the ConEd site located one block south of the United Nations Complex on the East River, the project is an exploration in dynamic programming within the urban fabric.
Giving careful consideration to the developers proposal and the community board’s counter proposal, we proceeded by developing the project as a civic node of privately owned public space that would provide much needed facilities to the community.
Facilities included a community center which houses a library, Olympic size pool, game rooms, meeting rooms, computer labs, gardens, ball room, and theater / lecture hall. In addition to the indoor facilities we made use of expanded existing outdoor recreation areas and introduced new courts and fields of athletic activities.
Another primary element to the project is the extension of the existing East river Esplanade. One of many parks that rap the perimeter of Manhattan, we extended it three city blocks and integrated it into a flowing landscape along the water’s wedge. We also choose to relocate the existing ferry dock one block south of the site and develop a ferry terminal that would support multiple water routs and host a cruise line that reaches out into the river.
In addition to the community center and transportation facilities, we emphasized commercial retail and entertainment throughout the project. These commercial units activate the street level as well as the elevated levels within the project. Given the scope of the project and the numerous program elements involved we decided to build over the FDR highway in order to reclaim approximately four thousand square feet of usable space, similar to how the UN plaza was constructed over the highway.