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Wilkinson Eyre has foggy idea for New York island

Wilkinson Eyre is the only British practice battling for the chance to redevelop New York's Governors Island.

The firm is up against four US practices, all of whom are vying for the opportunity to revamp the southern half of the island, to create what the city hopes will become a miniature rival to Central Park.

Working alongside New York landscape architect Field Operations, Wilkinson Eyre is proposing a series of rolling, 'scallop-shaped' earthworks, modelled on the molluscs that once encrusted the island's shore.

The scheme will include a new sea wall to the south of the island, which will allow the tides to flow in and out of the landscape. At the northern edge, a dense forest of oak and maple trees will mark the boundary between the park area and the historic district.

Wilkinson Eyre's team is even proposing a man-made fog, created by a grid of misters, to 'evoke a fairytale setting'.

The British firm is up against Hargreaves Associates and Michael Maltzan Architecture; REX/MDP; a team that includes Diller Scofidio & Renfro, Rogers Marvel Architects, West 8, and Quennell Rothschild & Partners; and WRT with Urban Strategies.

All five schemes are on show at New York's Centre for Architecture in Greenwich Village, and a winner will be announced next month.

by Richard Vaughan

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