Deconstructed Salt Marsh

Brooklyn, NY
  • Waterfront
  • Resilience / Climate Adaptation
  • Ecological Design
  • Cultural / Institutional
  • ASLA-NY Design Award, 2014

The Deconstructed Salt Marsh is a proposal to repurpose an existing collapsed pier in Sunset Park, Brooklyn into a public learning laboratory for intertidal habitat and harbor ecology. While adjacent industrial piers have been converted into successful recreational park space through city initiatives, Pier 5 remains untouched, generating an “accidental” intertidal habitat that has ecological and public value. Designated in neighborhood plans as future park space, the un-built proposal provokes a public dialogue around the redevelopment of this site, highlighting the value of adapting and revealing what exists rather than completely reconstructing the pier into a traditional recreational park. Ongoing urban eelgrass restoration research by Bart Chezar and the New York Harbor School support the design work, and position the site as a place for future scientific study and educational programming. The 900’ long shallow sloped collapsed pier emerges and disappears according to the tidal cycle, and the site is one of the few vistas within the harbor where one can witness the visible changing of the tides.


Bart Chezar