New York

New Amsterdam Plein & Pavilion



New Amsterdam Plein & Pavilion
New York, NY

Clients
The Battery Conservancy
NYC Department of Parks & Recreation
Awards
Design Award | Society of American Registered Architects National
Award of Merit | AIA New York
Design Award | Society of American Registered Architects New York Council
Award for Excellence in Design | New York City Design Commission
Photography
James D'Addio

In January 2009, the mayor of Amsterdam, Marius Job Cohen, and the mayor of New York, Michael R. Bloomberg, joined forces to announce NYC400, a yearlong celebration of the 400th anniversary of Henry Hudson's arrival in New York Harbor in 1609.

As part of this year of special events, Peter Minuit Plaza at The Battery will become the site of the New Amsterdam Plein & Pavilion, "outdoor living room" for spontaneous and scheduled activities, public markets, seating and shade, and an iconic state-of-the-art pavilion for food and information, designed in collaboration by Dutch firm UNStudio (Design Architect) and Handel Architects (Executive Architect). The Plein & Pavilion will be unique among the city's many public spaces: a landscaped intermodal transportation hub, where bicycles, buses, subway, and water transportation intersect with cultural offerings.

To express the interplay of history and future, the landscape architects of New York City Department of Parks & Recreation Manhattan Capital Projects have conceived a stone-paved civic platform - plein, in Dutch - with walkways featuring engraved quotations from Russell Shorto's book The Island at the Center of the World.


A carved stone map of Castello's New Amsterdam will grace the Plein's entrance to provide historical context. Within the open space of the Plein, visitors will find seating and tables. These will surround a highly sculptural pavilion with an expressive, undulating roofline and curving walls: a compact building with the power of a major landmark, evoking a flower opening to its surroundings. The pavilion will be equipped with an electronic façade LED system that allows for a constantly changing light show at night.

New Amsterdam Plein & Pavilion is made possible by a major grant from the government of the Kingdom of the Netherlands to The Battery Conservancy, as part of the NY400 celebration and in honor of the enduring relationship between New York and Holland.