Heatherwick hired to design world's most expensive public art

Mark Wilding

Proposed Hudson Yards public square by Nelson Byrd Woltz

American developer appoints British designer to Hudson Yards team

Thomas Heatherwick has been hired by billionnaire American developer Stephen Ross to create one of the world’s most expensive pieces of public art at the £10 billion Hudson Yards development in New York.

Heatherwick will work with landscape architects Nelson Byrd Woltz to design a 1.6 ha public space including a “monumental sculpture” which will provide “a new icon for the city”.

According to the Wall Street Journal, Ross has said he intends to spend up to £45 million on the sculpture and the surrounding public space.

Heatherwick said: “This is a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity to integrate a new kind of public space into the fabric of the city and to add another layer to New York’s rich cultural heritage.”

The Hudson Yards masterplan has been designed by KPF and a host of high-profile architecture firms have been recruited to design individual aspects including SOM, Diller Scofidio & Renfro and Gensler.

More than 1.2 million sq m of commercial and residential space, shops, hotels, schools and parks are planned on a 10 hectare site in Manhattan.

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