Monday, November 4, 2013

Protecting Central Park's Access to Sunlight


The New York Times looks at how a flurry of new construction could cut off large swaths of Central Park from the sun and asks why more people aren't complaining:

Fueled by lax zoning laws, cheap capital and the rise of a global elite with millions to spend on pieds-à-terre, seven towers — two of them nearly as tall as the Empire State Building — have recently been announced or are already under way near the south side of the park. This so-called Billionaires’ Row, with structures rising as high as 1,424 feet, will form a fence of steel and glass that will block significant swaths of the park’s southern exposure, especially in months when the sun stays low in the sky. [...]

That means the shadows of the larger of these planned buildings would jut half a mile into the park at midday on the solstice and elongate to around a mile in length as they angled across the park toward the Upper East Side, darkening playgrounds and ball fields, as well as paths and green space like Sheep Meadow that are enjoyed by 38 million visitors each year. “The cumulative effect of these shadows will be to make the park less usable and less pleasant to be in,” Mr. Kwartler said.

(HT: Celeste Pagano)

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