A new pier park for the East River Esplanade

How exciting is it to witness more waterfront parkland open to the neighborhood? Tribeca resident and landscape architect Ken Smith, in partnership with SHoP Architects, recently put the finishing touches on Pier 35 — the “eco pier” that is part of the redevelopment of the two-mile East River Waterfront Esplanade being designed by the two design firms and built by EDC. (You can find it just on the north side of the Manhattan Bridge, and you can see its steel screen — designed to hide the working half of the pier — as you look down from the FDR overpass.)

The pier features a lawn; event space; dunes; the screen, which will eventually be covered in in five species of plants; and swings that face south towards the two bridges (literally). The “eco” part is largely thanks to a mussel beach that is also a literal translation: it’s a concrete habitat designed to encourage the population of blue and ribbed mussels, who seem to have already found their new home. (For more on the habitat and its engineering here.)

These photos of the pier coming together thanks to Ken.




  1. Nifty! Love mussels!