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Hudson River Park Gets Ready to Spin Right Round, Baby

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While tempers get hot over the carousel coming to Brooklyn Bridge Park, over in West Chelsea?on Pier 62 in Hudson River Park's Chelsea Cove?a new merry-go-round has arrived. This will be a centerpiece of Hudson River Park's Segment 5, where Michael Van Valkenburgh Associates are the designers-in-charge. The crew from CR Studio, the same team in charge of the FDNY clubhouse being built at Pier 53, are finishing up a 6,500-square-foot faceted steel shed that houses the new carousel. The 35-foot spinning wheel of wild animals, created by Carousel Works, is now in place, protected by a concrete roof that will incorporate solar panels to power the carousel, restrooms and other amenities housed within.

Inspiration for CR Studio's trussed structure came from the old Pier 64, one of the last surviving pier structures within the Hudson River Park. Built in 1903 by Bethlehem Steel, the big shed sported sinuous 90-foot-span trusses. When it was decided that the old pier shed had to come down, the original idea was to reuse the steel, creating "a connection to the history of the pier in a not too literal way." But that plan didn't play out, and a scheme incorporating new trusses of five different sizes evolved into the design that's been built.

When the carousel opens later this year it won't be the only fun to be had at Chelsea Cove. At the foot of Pier 62 a rad skate park is ready to rock. To the north, where Pier 64 meets the West Side Highway, a stoney play area has gone in, part of a permanent installation incorporating 38 boulders and perennial plants by New York artist Meg Webster called "Stone Field." All that fun will offer entertainment for new neighbors living behind glass high over Eleventh Avenue. And the pier scene as viewed from the terrace atop one pricey penthouse should be peerless.
· In a Sea of Stalled and/or Screwed Projects, We Get a Carousel [Curbed]
· Grass is Greener at New Chunk of Hudson River Park [Curbed]
· Selected Projects: Pier 62 Carousel [CR Studio]

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