Public Plaza example from NYC

With all the recent talk about creating great new public spaces in Allston, I thought this could be an interesting example to keep in mind. It was designed by the same firm that did Ray Mellone Park behind the Honan Library.

This 1 acre park cost $18 million and is featured in the current issue of Architectural Record magazine. The article notes that "Public plazas are difficult to design and program—in-between spaces that are neither park nor street."

"The plaza is inviting, in part, because of its obvious craft. From the benches, for which the marble was handpicked from a Vermont quarry, to the bronze garbage cans, which appear to balance on their rounded bottoms from sheer centrifugal force, the luxury of the hard surfaces complements the garden elements."
The architects created curving plant beds to provide visitors with a sense of intimacy and separation from the street. The marble benches and cobbles add luxury to the civic plaza. Magnolias in bloom signal spring’s arrival.
Today, curved plant beds hug marble benches, some with embedded LED lights. Magnolias add a park-like element to the hard-surface plaza, while a fountain invites interaction.
Jacob K. Javits Federal Building Plaza | Michael Van Valkenburgh Associates | New York City | Project Portfolio | Architectural Record:

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