Vision 42

NY City, USA 2014 (Lost competition)

The main purpose of this competition was the conversion of 42nd Street into an auto-free landscaped urban corridor with a low-floor light rail line.

The landscape concept design lies on the resurgence of nature in an arid and polluted land covered by a hard concrete layer - this hard layer is coated by a second one made of a smooth shining material – pedestrian friendly - that eliminates completely the references of car traffic and pollution. It is then ripped by the force of nature, and all kind of plants can pop up and grow to create a fully landscape walking environment.

The proposed layout for the 42nd street – a central passage with alternated station positions - aims to minimize the width of the LRT corridor. Although it can be walked/crossed through all along, the LRT corridor is marked on both sides by a security strip for maximum pedestrian safety. The crossroads will be treated as pedestrian areas (same kind of pavements) but will be raised relatively to the car lanes level. All areas, including platforms are fully accessible to disabled citizens.

A green structure – composed by trees and shrubs, punctuated by benches, bikes stands and other urban furniture - is allowed along the entire street. This structure is disposed along strips that derive in different alignments to mitigate the linearity of the street and create different spaces with different atmospheres and activities, also allowing the highlighting of notable buildings and structures.

Public Spaces
Area: 192084,57 sqm
Team: Margarida Quelhas, Nuno Mota, Cristina Leal
Urbanism: Costa Lopes Arq.
Client: Institute for Rational Urban Mobility, Inc.