Friday, January 21, 2011

More Hidden Rivers - NYC

An interesting post from Urban Omnibus from earlier in January entitled 'Grey vs. Green: Daylighting the Saw Mill River' is less intriguing in design concept that in larger idea of envisioning the expression of the variety of waterways that are hidden/buried/forgotten within our urban areas.  As referenced by Eric Sanderson through  his work on the fabulous Mannahatta project "The movement of water is universal. What takes it out of the ordinary is the infrastructure we have built around and in spite of it. Mannahatta notes that there were once 34.9 miles of “rocky headwater stream communities” and 14.2 miles of “marsh headwater stream communities” on our island, in addition to numerous springs, ponds, and intermittent streams."

The idea of  a more artistic expression comes out in the great image from the article.  The idea, as mentioned in the caption: "Spanning the corridor between the 42nd Street/Bryant Park BDFV station and the 5 Av 7 station, Samm Kunce’s mosaic “Under Bryant Park” is an evocative imagining of the root and water paths behind the tiled walls. ."

:: image  via Urban Omnibus - Photo by Zach Youngerman

The design concepts seem pretty standard fare visually, although the are made up of highly artificial and engineered system.  The authentic expression of 'system' seems an interesting challenge for designers, similar to restoration processes for the LA River which has elicited terms like 'Freakology' to describe the hybridized ecological system.

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