Forest City Unveils design of 8-acre Park above Brooklyn’s LIRR Rail Yard

Thomas Balsley Associates have been tasked with designing a permanent 8 acre public park for Brooklyn. Bringing it to life in phases, the 535 Carlton and 550 Vanderbilt – luxury residences designed by COOKFOX and complete with a percentage of affordable housing – are critical sites that will bookend the new public park. This is an extraordinary opportunity to create an open green space at the center of some of Brooklyn’s most vibrant and dynamic neighborhoods. Pacific Park will transform a rail yard into a destination for all New Yorkers.

Reflective of New York City’s reputation as a City of neighborhoods, Thomas Balsley Associates’ design for Pacific Park establishes a landscape typology – the archipelago – that will allow a flexible infusion of program, architecture, and plant material to unify the project site; the majority of which sits atop the Long Island Rail Road train yard between 6th and Vanderbilt Avenues, Atlantic Avenue, and Dean Street. Brooklyn’s newest major public open space, Pacific Park physically aligns with the center of the site striving to connect it to the rest of its neighbors.

The landscape is a cohesive, continuous and inviting open space with a range of uses and activities; links from north to south shall be provided between the new development and the surrounding neighborhoods by continuing the existing street system as pedestrian corridors into the open space. The open space will be sheltered from Atlantic Avenue traffic while promoting public access and use. The landscape design will take into account costs of both construction and future maintenance, a phased implementation strategy with temporary conditions, and a vision for the Pacific Street Terminus at Carlton Avenue.

Thomas Balsley Associates sets the tone for this new urban fabric that will provide a cohesive and democratic relationship to the 10 buildings slated to furnish the site. The public park that is Pacific Park transcends its graphic identity as mere appendage to the development. It is the very heart of this project, a place where design and nature come together, creating space for recreation, contemplation, and humanity.