NYC’s newest public park on the West Side waterfront, Little Island is an amazing combination of architecture, nature and art that offers a one-of-a-kind, immersive experience. Built atop Pier 54 in an effort to revitalize the pier after it suffered severe damage by Hurricane Sandy, the vision for this park is to be an inclusive urban oasis where people come to rest, restore and immerse themselves in art of all forms.
Little Island is supported by 132 concrete, pot-shaped structures called “tulips” that are suspended above the water, the tallest one rising 62 feet above the Hudson River! Each pot weighs up to 75 tons and no two are exactly the same.
Planted in these pots are nearly 400 species of trees, shrubs, grasses, perennials and vines, many of which were specifically selected by Landscape Architect Signe Nielsen for their attractiveness to birds and pollinators. The assortment of these botanicals is breathtaking, as are the views of the Freedom Tower, the Manhattan skyline and the Empire State Building that you encounter at every turn. This unique intersection of city and nature makes Little Island a true photographer’s paradise!
This $250 million project was funded by The Diller – von Furstenberg Family Foundation, with sculptural design by Heatherwick Studios (UK) and landscape design by MNLA (NYC). Ideas for this 2.4 acre park first arose back in 2011, but construction did not actually begin until 2018. It was completed this year and officially opened to the public on May 21, 2021.
After exploring Little Island myself, I 100% recommend that you add it to your “Must See When in NYC” list! I was blown away by its design innovation and the geniusness of its landscape architecture, and can’t wait to return to the park to enjoy a performance in its waterfront amphitheater!
📍 Hudson River Park between 13th and 14th Streets
📆 365 days from 6:00 am to 1:00 am
💲 Free, timed entry reservations required from 12:00 pm on