The Birth of Battery Park City

In honor of the fiftieth birthday of Battery Park City—Governor Nelson Rockefeller signed the Battery Park City Authority Act in June of 1968—the Battery Park City Authority has been tweeting photos from the archives, and I’ve found them so interesting that I asked if I could run a post of them. I imagine that even though many of us know that the neighborhood isn’t very old, we’ll still find it amazing that it was created from the ground (or water) up.

This is definitely one of those posts where the photos benefit from being seen larger, so click on them.

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An old conceptual rendering (that didn’t come to be, of course).

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The neighborhood rising.

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Landfill.

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The southern end.

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Agnes Denes’s “Wheatfield: A Confrontation” (1982), when she planted two acres of wheat in the landfill.

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Gateway Plaza construction.

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North End Avenue in the 1980s.

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The construction of Teardrop Park.

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Thanks again to the Battery Park City Authority for the photos!

 

3 Comments

  1. Anybody remember Art on the Beach?

    • I remember it well. One summer a German artist named Uwe Mengel did an installation consisting of a number of different sites around the beach which you were supposed to visit to piece together a murder mystery: study the clues, figure out the murderer. I knew him a little and asked him, after I’d tried and failed to solve the mystery, who the murderer was, and he said he didn’t really know. He’d never worked it out himself. He liked that it was unsolvable, he liked baffling people. I miss the beach, as I miss the elevated highway, the best walk in New York.

  2. LOVE these! Thanks for sharing!

    I think photo #7 is more likely to be from the early 1990s. Stuy was completed in 1992 and Nelson Rockefeller park was done around the same time (I remember going to a friend’s 8th bday picnic there on the first day it opened!), which you can see the curvy, landscaped end of on the right side.

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