Downtown NYC


Cassandra Tai-Marcellini, Pratt Institute

Practice Area




Project Vision

Downtown NYC: A Proposal for Lower Manhattan

This plan creates a renewed sense of place as the neighborhood rebuilds, pays homage to Downtown’s importance to the beginning of the city’s history, and looks confidently toward its bright future.

A curving wall houses an LCD video screen 90 feet in length. Programming would include real-time news headlines and images, financial and market data, information about historical sites and events around Downtown, and updates on the rebuilding efforts, weather, date, and time. The graphic style and imagery of this screen is reflected in the tourist maps and brochures also available onsite. Electronic tickers programmed with literary quotations about New York run along the interior and exterior of the handicap access ramp. A timeline of Lower Manhattan history is etched into a curved glass wall. Carved stone benches lit from below are each dedicated to a different Downtown street. Placed in a manner reflecting the street’s geography, each bench provides map detail and some history. An enclosed glass pavilion houses an information center, public restrooms, a small wine/snack bar, and seating.

Project Details
The integration of and contrast between solid simple materials and the ephemeral quality of electronic media is particularly appropriate to this site and to New York. The project demonstrates a sophisticated understanding of the nature of memory and vision, and of the way materials, forms, and images, can shape space, can shape our feelings, and can shape our understanding of our city and our times.
Juror 1
Design Firm

Cassandra Tai-Marcellini, Pratt Institute