The East River Esplanade–or, check that: the first two-block waterfront stretch of the $165.9 million East River Esplanade–was officially opened last week (and unofficially a couple of weeks before that), and it is, in a word, fantastic. Beautifully designed and landscaped by Ken Smith of Ken Smith Landscape Architect, and Gregg Pasquarelli of SHoP Architects, these stunning New York waterfront views are the latest step is in the Mayor's Office Vision 2020 plan to encircle the entire island of Manhattan with public green spaces… and, as good fortune would have it, it's just a few blocks away from two of Glenwood's downtown luxury rental buildings, Liberty Plaza and Barclay Tower.
You'll instantly notice the echoes of the High Line on the East River Esplanade, in the abundance of native-to-New York wild flowers and grasses poking up through the concrete; in the recessed lighting, cleverly placed for maximum drama and romance; and in the sleek seating options, which include wooden-slatted chaise lounge and an intimate "Look Out" amphitheater, with the East River, and the Brooklyn shoreline, as its stage. But the East River Esplanade also has some unique pleasures and surprises of its own.
For example, we loved the wonderful high stools that perch you right over the water, and utilize the wide-topped guardrail as a sort of counter space. These are very comfortable, as is all the seating, whether individual chairs, the previously mentioned chaise lounge, or the benches. We also got a kick out of the sure-to-be wildly popular, fully-loaded dog playground, complete with climbing bridge, sand pit, and a "splash pad" with sprinklers, which, because they are embedded into the playground's flooring, and can be controlled manually, double as the perfect way to prank your pup. Just wait until your dog is standing over water jet, hit "on", watch as hilarity ensues!
East River Waterfront Esplanade Details
The East River Waterfront Esplanade, Phase One, is located between Pier 11 at Wall Street, and Maiden Lane, hard by the East River. For more information about the project, please see the press releases on the NYC.gov site, here.