Cast your vote for Brooklyn Bridge Forest by July 30th for the Reimagining Brooklyn Bridge Challenge: https://www.vanalen.org/projects/reimagining-brooklyn-bridge/
This is exactly the type of sustainable urban development work I’m so passionate about studying & bringing to life in New York.
The “Brooklyn Bridge Forest,” uses sustainably harvested wood to benefit local communities in Guatemala while safeguarding 200,000 acres of rainforest, and is a finalist in a competition to Reimagine the Brooklyn Bridge.
The competition, held by the NYC Council and the Van Alen Institute, calls for rethinking the iconic Brooklyn Bridge, improving walkways on the bridge that are often crowded with bicyclists and pedestrians. As made even more clear by recent events, our streets and shared spaces must foster equitable, accessible, and sustainable transportation options, creating a healthy and safe environment for all New Yorkers.
In response to this call, the Brooklyn Bridge Forest project reimagines the bridge as an icon of climate action and social equity, improving mobility while respecting the landmark structure. The historic wooden walkway is expanded using planks of FSC-certified wood sustainably sourced from the Uaxactun community in Guatemala’s Maya Biosphere Reserve that protects a 200,000-acre rainforest. A dedicated bike path and reclaimed traffic lane create new space for cyclists and low-carbon transit, while biodiverse “microforests” at either end of the bridge bring nature to New York City and serve as green spaces for underserved communities.
The Brooklyn Bridge Forest project will also help NYC meet its commitment to an “80×50” plan, to cut its emissions by 80% by 2050, an ambitious goal that will require very creative and far-reaching strategies.
Said Jeremy Radachowsky, WCS Mesoamerica Regional Director: “The Brooklyn Bridge Forest not only reimagines the Brooklyn Bridge; it reimagines humanity’s relationship with nature and our global climate, using the Brooklyn Bridge to lead us there.”
The project is a collaborative effort between the Wild Life Conservation Society (operators of NYC’s zoos and aquarium) Pilot Projects Design Collective LLC, Cities4Forests, Grimshaw Architects, and Silman DPC.