New York City is a constantly changing city that is always looking for ways to enhance the lives of its residents. From library transformations to adding fun attractions to existing sites, here are a few of the changes you will see underway in the New Year.
Carnegie Library Undergoes Transformation
Elmhurst’s erstwhile Carnegie library has undergone a transformation that is expected to help it become the most visited of the libraries within the Queens library system. In the works for more than 8 years, the project has finally come to an end. Designedby Marpillero Pollak Architects, the building has doubled in size and now encompasses 32,000 square feet of space. The facade features glass cubes protruding from the surface along with terracotta tiles, metal and brick constructed by Stalco Construction. Designed to meet LEED Silver standards, the building also boasts two green roofs and 13,000 square feet of outdoor space.
Inside the library, visitors will find children’s, teen and adult sections as well as services such as an early learning center with a play kitchen, an adult learning center and an international section offering media in nine different languages. Due to its size and amenities, local officials expect the library to attract approximately 1.2 million visitors per year.
Bronx Zoo to Get 45-Foot High Zip Line
Beginning this summer, the Bronx Zoo will feature a permanent zip line that will carry adventurers across the Bronx River from a vantage point that is 45 feet in the air. Plans call for the zip line to start atop at tower at the west bank of the river traveling 375 feet across to another tower on the east bank. While zipping along, participants enjoy a bird’s eye view of the river and the adjacent 265-acre forest. A kid-friendly adventure course called Nature Trek will also be available this summer. The area will include a variety of attractions, including a tree house and a nature-themed playground.
Pier 26 to Undergo Eco-Friendly Transformation
Although construction is still more than a year away, architect Rafael Vinoly and landscape firm Olin have started making plans for making over Pier 26 in Tribeca. Preliminary plans call for the development of lounging areas, elevated walkways and distinct green areas labeled as “forest” and “lawns” in the early renderings. Recreational areas for sports and a children’s playground are also included in the plans.
The Hudson River Park Trust, which oversees the pier’s management, recently presented the plans to the public. One of the standout features within the plans is the “lounge nets” area which involves placing netting over the water so visitors have the sense of being immersed in the river. Plans also call for the construction of the estuarium, which is an education center that will be located near the pier’s entrance.
The pier, which is located between North Moore Street and Hubert Street, underwent structural renovations in 2008 and 2009. Plans to redevelop the pier have been discussed for years, but the trust only recently secured the necessary funding.