Spruce Street Plaza Improvements

William Street Plaza: North View
West Plaza: South View
West Plaza: North View

Spruce Street Plaza Improvements

Our clients requested plaza improvements to bring them into compliance with the City’s public plaza zoning requirements. Specifically, we were asked to establish a year-round landscape presence and lighting upgrades at William Street and West Plazas, two built through-street public plazas, (designed by James Corner – Field Operations).

Flanking the Gehry Building, a residential skyscraper in downtown Manhattan, these pedestrian corridor links experience year-round heavy foot traffic between neighboring institutions and nearby transit hub. Selected plants need to stand up to literally thousands of touches by people daily, many accompanied by their pets. Another significant challenge is plant survival in this unique urban microclimatic created by the looming skyscraper, building shadows, shifting wind patterns and variable sun exposure.

The solution – introduction of a sustainable mixed-plant palette to soften plaza frameworks and enhance their ambiance. Included were new species of at-grade trees and evergreen shrubs placed in raised plaza beds beneath existing tree canopies. Additionally, borders and pockets of herbaceous perennials and annuals at planter edges introduce color and foliage while extending the bloom cycle and seasonal interest.

Completed: 2017
Client: Forest City Ratner Companies and Spruce Street Condominium