Tags: barry diller | hudson | park

Barry Diller Hudson Park to Sit on Piers in River Off Manhattan

Image: Barry Diller Hudson Park to Sit on Piers in River Off Manhattan
Media executive Barry Diller (R) and fashion designer Diane von Furstenberg. (Scott Olson/Getty Images, file)

By    |   Tuesday, 18 Nov 2014 07:59 AM

Media mogul Barry Diller and his wife, fashion designer Diane von Furstenberg, have donated $130 million to the Hudson River Park Trust to build a new public common and performance space off the west-side piers.

The New York Times reported Monday that the 2.4-acre park, to be called Pier 55, will be constructed on top of 300 pylons that will create an elevated and varied terrain ranging from 15 to 70 feet off the water. Of the multiple planned performance spaces, the largest would accommodate 1,000 in seats and another 2,500 on a lawn. Construction will begin in 2016 and be complete by 2018 or 2019.

The city and state have contributed a combined $35 million to the project to construct two piers that will serve as the pathways to the park — stemming off the land near 13th Street. The couple is fond of Manhattan's West Side, having constructed corporate headquarters in the Meatpacking District, and donated the largest private sum to the new High Line elevated park.

"There is no performance center in New York with these kinds of aspirations," Diller told the New York Daily News.

"New York has always reminded me of Venice, so I am happy the time has come to properly honor its waterways," said von Furstenberg.

Some have criticized what they've perceived as secretiveness surrounding the planning, and lack of opportunity for input from the public.

"Diller is obviously being extremely generous, but private citizens are being able to dictate public spaces," said Geoffrey Croft, president of NYC Park Advocates. "The public has been completely left out."

Diana L. Taylor, the chairwoman of the trust, has said in response to critics that Diller is "building something absolutely amazing for the public . . . Somebody’s got to pay for it. We don’t have the money."

The lease for the park must still be approved by the trust's board, and will undergo a 60-day public review.

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Media mogul Barry Diller and his wife, fashion designer Diane von Furstenberg, have donated $130 million to the Hudson River Park Trust to build a new public common and performance space off the west-side piers.
barry diller, hudson, park
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2014-59-18
Tuesday, 18 Nov 2014 07:59 AM
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