On a recent work trip to New York City, I took some extra time out to see some of the recent landscapes that have been built since I was up there last. I have been to NYC a lot, and even lived there for a while, but there is always something new for a landscape architect to see – especially lately.
I set the goal for myself to see as many places as possible – new ones and old favorites – in a 24-hour period. I was not out to experience some grand epiphany about the urban landscape but, rather, I wanted to see these places as they exist in the real world – the frigid world – and not as typically displayed in design magazines, where they are professionally photographed in full bloom and full of happy people.
So what you see next are my impressions - in sequence - of a cold, snowy Manhattan from Friday afternoon to Saturday afternoon – a composite view of the character, diversity and, yes, the beauty that I discovered in what is perhaps the most dynamic urban landscape in the world.
So take from this what you will. I could go on and on about what I saw - the relative, hollow emptiness of spaces typically full in better weather, the structure and power of bare trees, the palpable relationship between landscape and architecture in winter, the resurrection of a forgotten urban grittiness, and so on. But, for once, I will let the imagery do the talking and leave it be...until next month, at least.