Public Park Installation for Freshkills Park in Staten Island

Title: Loop

Client: Land Art Generator Initiative

Location: Freshkills Park, Staten Island, New York

Completion: 2012

Type: Competition

Team: Chris Li, Alena Parunina, Amir Kripper, Michael Grogan

The proposal for the Freshkills Park is a “Loop” that aims to dissolve the traditional boundaries between landscape, architecture, public art and renewable energy infrastructure. The project, located on the North Park, consists of a two hundred foot wide boardwalk, articulated by a number of vertical elements on which a system of flexible solar panels are mounted. Through a series of ramped manipulations, the installation corresponds to the unique topography of the site, mediating the slopes of the hill and providing spectacular vistas of the entire park.

The generous circular path loosely defines a journey while serving as a framework transitioning between the new and existing landscape. Along the walkway, a system of circular planters, that vary from five to sixty feet in diameter, are planted with indigenous flowers, plants and trees of Staten Island as well as exotic ones. In addition, circular pools collect rain water and the Loop foundation provides a runoff break allowing filtered water to return to the creek. The structure of the loop is articulated with steel I beams, or “ribs”, every fifty feet, supported by a light concrete mat foundation on grade. The flexible solar panels are arranged on a metal mesh with steel cables that span between the ribs.

A large open amphitheater is integrated into the wooden pathway, which can accommodate large events and live performances. The Loop is able to host diverse cultural, social and athletic activities year around as well as providing a unique space for learning, relaxing and playing. 

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