Teardrop Park is a 1.8-acre public park in lower Manhattan that transcends its small size, shady environment, and mid-block location through bold topography, complex irregular space, and robust plantings. Teardrop's design and construction were coordinated with the development of four surrounding apartment buildings, each ranging from 210 feet to 235 feet in height. In the development of Teardrop Park, sustainability was not merely a goal, but rather an organizing principle that influenced everything from material selection to contractor practices. Based on decades-long research into urban soils and non-toxic plant maintenance, environmental aspects of the park's design include fully organic soils and maintenance regimes that don't rely on pesticides, herbicides, or fungicides. Treated and recycled graywater from the adjacent LEED Gold-rated Solaire Building and stormwater runoff from the site are captured in an underground storage pipe, supplying all of the park's irrigation needs. There are two artworks integrated into the design. Ben Ruben's sound piece 'Mumeration', and Ann Hamilton & Michael Mercil's 'Ice Walls'. These consist of three bluestone sections evoke a sense of geologic flux and transition between present time (now) and past time (then). While recalling a natural history of the Hudson River Valley, these sections might also recall the processes of quarrying, or of masonry. But this stonework neither comes from nor quite belongs to any of those things. And because it was never any other built thing, the stonework is not a ruin. Lift, thrust, fold, fault, drop, scrape, erode—our rendering of geologic incident at Teardrop Park is not anti-form, but is also not yet, or not quite form. It is a becoming of, or coming to, form that makes real our relation to landscape as well as our relation to art.. Water flowing on it runs down in the summer and forms icicles in winter.

Constructed, 2004

Old - ASLA Honor Award in 2009