RWA Tour Of Brooklyn Bridge Park
Last week students in RWA’s Environmentor Program took a guided tour of the Brooklyn Bridge Park with landscape architect Paul Seck of Michael Van Valkenburgh Associates. Brooklyn Bridge Park is located on the shores of the East River, a 16-mile tidal waterway that flows between Long Island Sound and the New York Harbor.
The park was opened to the public just a few months ago and serves as an excellent example of collaborative planning with city agencies and the local community. As the park is still under construction, the students learned about planting and storm water retention and how the designers used landscaping to not only provide recreation space, but to also improve the environment. Seck highlighted the areas of the park where recycled, reclaimed materials were used to make fencing, benches, and cladding on park structures.
When completed, Brooklyn Bridge Park will offer 1.3 miles of public space, with kayaking, sports fields, tidal pools, playgrounds, fishing piers, and a marina. He explained how the community collaborated to plan and design the park, to reclaim the waterfront and replace abandoned piers, parking lots, and storage sheds. The students were inspired by the park and discussed finding ways to create public space in the Rockaways that would serve the local community as Brooklyn Bridge Park does.