On View July 26-October 19, 2012
Brooklyn Bridge Park
Michael van Valkenburgh Associates
Immensity + Intimacy: Brooklyn Bridge Park explores the reborn landscape on New York City’s East River as a prototype for reimagining the urban waterfront. Through an inventive series of strategies, including sculpting the site’s complex maritime edge, reusing salvaged materials, and embedding ecology and experience, the park, designed by Michael Van Valkenburgh Associates, redefines the Brooklyn waterfront as a central place in the civic imagination.
Immensity + Intimacy is the first in Van Alen Institute’s 2012-2013 exhibition series, River City: Waterfront Design for Civic Life, an investigation of how innovative riverfront design can act as a powerful tool for urban reinvention. By looking at case studies in New York, Seoul, and the Mississippi River Delta, River City examines how cities across America and around the world are reclaiming rivers as sites of cultural, environmental, and economic vitality. At the same time, the urgent challenges of climate change and demands for social equity have focused interest upon these complex urban landscapes. While revived waterfronts offer vast canvases for new development and recreation, converging ecological and economic forces have raised important questions about the river’s place in civic life.
Through its exhibitions and a series of related public programs, Van Alen will engage landscape architects, architects, planners, policymakers, urban advocates, and the riverfront’s broad public constituencies for dialogue and debate about the future of the urban shore.
On View Tuesday–Saturday, 11AM–6PM
Immensity + Intimacy: Brooklyn Bridge Park
Join us for a festive evening with representatives from Brooklyn Bridge Park’s design team at Michael Van Valkenburgh Associates, as well as riverfront advocates and the broader Van Alen community to celebrate the first exhibition in the River City series.
The Urban Polder:
What New York’s Waterfront Can Learn
from the Dutch
As it faces a changing climate, the Netherlands is undergoing an “extreme makeover”: the country that fashioned its landscape so distinctly to keep water out is now adjusting its centuries-old strategy of self-defense: it is letting the water back in. This new Dutch relationship to water holds critical lessons for New York as it prepares more than 500 miles of metropolitan waterfront for an ever wetter future. Author and journalist Tracy Metz shares research from her new volume Sweet & Salt: Water and the Dutch, followed by a discussion with panelists Susannah Drake (dlandstudio), Klaus Jacob (Lamont-Doherty Earth Observatory), Michael Marrella (New York City Department of City Planning), and moderator James S. Russell (Bloomberg News and The Agile City) on strategies for living in harmony with water, and what New York City could learn from Dutch techniques. Join us for a special reception following the program.
This program is presented with The Consulate General of the Netherlands in New York. It is part of Archtober, NYC’s month-long festival of architecture activities, programs, and exhibitions.
Redefining the River:
Challenges in Urban Waterfront Design
Join Alex Washburn of the New York City Department of City Planning as he leads a discussion on the challenges of integrating design into New York’s most complex landscape: the waterfront. Participants include Regina Myer of Brooklyn Bridge Park; Matthew Urbanski of Michael Van Valkenburgh Associates; Jonathan Marvel of Rogers Marvel Architects; Claire Weisz of WXY Architecture + Urban Design; Roland Lewis of the Metropolitan Waterfront Alliance; and Michael Fishman of Stantec.