NEW YORK AQUARIUM
New York City
A reconception of the perimeter of the New York Aquarium, to reconnect the aquarium with the Coney Island landscape, from the iconic amusements to the marine environment. Margie Ruddick led a team of architects to produce a blinking, breathing perimeter arching over a newly regenerated landscape, including a perimeter web designed by Cloud 9 architects of Barcelona. The overarching web ties together the disparate exhibits, as well as creates a new iconic structure for Coney Island.The perimeter concept is a structure of light, arching over the whole of the aquarium site. It is a new way of entering and experiencing the aquarium. It is a sculpture, a structure composed of compression arches, tension cables, masts, and hanging cable mesh. Its form was inspired by aquatic life. With 40,000 solar-powered LED’s, which change color nightly according to the energy generated during the day, the web communicates, like a fish skin. The perimeter web operates as the gills of the aquarium, filtering its water and air. The perimeter’s vertical gardens create a softer, greener edge for the City.
Lighting from underneath the boardwalk will cast the oceanfront edge of the aquarium in a blue light. The lenticular images along the Surf Avenue side will be seen from afar. The soundscapes along the boardwalk will be immersive 3-dimensional sound landscapes that anyone walking along the boardwalk can enter into.
The aquarium perimeter reaches far beyond the aquarium’s edge, to embrace the beach, with a new dunescape, and the sea, with marine habitat exhibits on existing and possibly new groins or jetties.