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Heatherwick’s Fantastic New Work, Using 132 “Flower Pots” To Create An Island, Subverting The Three Views!

ClassificationInterior design 12427 0

Interior Design Alliance


by Heatherwick

Heatherwick designed the floating park Little Island

was officially opened to the public

With the principle of letting New Yorkers enjoy nature and art, it is the largest and most creative public space after the High Line Park.

The newest New York City hot spot has been getting a lot of attention

For the past seven years

Because of high construction costs and environmental concerns

It has been shelved and resumed

The budget has increased from $35 million

to $260 million (about 1.6 billion yuan)

This shows the complexity of its design

Today, let’s explore the magic of this floating park.



A floating park built in the sky

Little Island is located at Pier 55 of the Hudson River

The entire island seems to be built in the air

From a distance, it looks like floating in the air

The island is shaded by greenery and undulating

Stage theater, leisure plaza, small bridge, picnic area

Everything is available~

267 mushroom-shaped concrete pillars

Slowly rise from underwater

creating a unique exterior form

The top of each column forms a square planter

Each planter is connected at different heights in a mosaic fashion

creating an undulating island landscape

The island covers 2.4 acres (approximately 9,712 m²)

On this undulating park platform

Contains 66,000 potted plants

Over 350 varieties of flowers and 114 trees

The park consists of three divisions.

Playground, Open Air Theater, and Wooded Open Space

The site meanders and undulates

Where the site meanders to form a floating island.

▲Plan of the Old Pier Trail

The biggest highlight of the project is the undulating structural tube

The unique concrete column is 0.9m in diameter and 61m deep underwater

The shape is very new and unique



Design Concept

The design work for the renovation of this wavy landscape park

by heatherwick studio and mathews nielsen

The park is erected on 300 mushroom-shaped concrete columns

The park has a unique shape and includes a venue for outdoor performances

There is an amphitheater with a capacity of 800 seats

Visitors can reach the park from the shore of New York City through two parallel visitor paths

The park is accessible from the shore of New York City

Open space to accommodate a variety of recreational needs

The park entrance construction site @ Michael Young


One of the highlights of the project is the undulating structural tubes

The designers defined it as a structural container that can be planted

to create a diverse topography with this element

As the structure is finally coming together

the first pre-purchased trees have arrived on site

The subsequent work will focus on the creation of dense greenery

The designer’s green design will protect the city from storms

It also serves as a marine sanctuary for bass

Undulating structural tubes

300 mushroom-shaped concrete columns

rise slowly from underwater

Creating a unique exterior form above the water

The top of each column forms a square planter

Each planter is connected at different heights in a mosaic pattern

forming an undulating landscape

Like a leaf floating in the water

Column model

Concrete columns slowly rise underwater

Concrete column surface texture


The designers selected over 100 different species of trees and plants

to suit New York’s climatic and environmental conditions

to create a vibrant space for art, education and community.

At the same time, the designers sought to use the project

to express their possibilities and resilience to climate change

To provide a strong protective barrier for New York City



Construction Process

The island contains a total of 267 concrete structural tubes

These unique columns and “planters”

were prefabricated at the Fort Miller Company

concrete plant

Mold Making

Concrete Pouring and Forming

A total of 39 different formwork types were created during the process

655 precast concrete components were made

▲Section of reinforcing steel

The components were transported from the factory to the port

and then transported by water to the project site

The prefabricated mantle is lifted on site

Precisely lifted onto the concrete pile foundation

The concrete piles are 0.9m in diameter and 61m deep underwater.

Final installation, testing and adjustment

After assembly

The landscape design firm MNLA began work on the design

Since all plants require a lot of drainage and soil bedding

So they designed a complex system

to address the extreme slope changes

From the concrete slab, a 1.9cm drainage mat was added in sequence

followed by a 45-cm layer of gravel

Between 30cm and 60cm of foam soil

And finally, the soil is laid down

MNLA has divided nine different zones to accommodate different

9 different zones were defined to accommodate different climate changes

It also reduces the burden on the concrete structure

Evergreen trees were planted in the north and northeast to

shield the highway and winter winds

In the higher southwest, sheet pile retaining walls were added

and geotechnical foam to create planting beds

The higher south corner was designed to allow sunlight to reach the area below

Soil is loaded onto the island by hydraulic boom crane

All trees are weighed upon delivery and assigned specific cranes based on their size and placed precisely into the reserved holes. Because Hudson is prone to strong winds, the design and engineering team resisted the risk of tree uprooting by tying the root structure to a wire mesh pre-drilled into the concrete slab.


The leaves of the trees chosen for the park are on the small side

Minimize the impact of strong winds

The passage under the park also provides people

The park’s lower walkway provides a comfortable space for people to relax.


Although Little Island has been a difficult project with many twists and turns

The project ended perfectly

The completed island is lush and poetic

A beautiful addition to Manhattan

After seeing this cool floating park

What do you think?

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