Alley Pond Environmental Center

Queens, NY

DLANDstudio is working with Leroy Street Studio to develop a restorative masterplan for the aging Alley Pond Environmental Center in Queens. The current center hosts 50,000 visitors each year, including students from Nassau County, Suffolk County, and all five boroughs of New York City, and has outgrown its current facilities. The Environmental Center, located within Alley Pond Park, is adjacent to salt and freshwater wetlands, providing visitors with a wide range of proximate ecologies with a great potential for hands-on learning experiences.  The new facility will recycle rain water, collect storm water run-off from the parking lot, and showcase native plant species in rain gardens. Water management features and building elements will increase the Center’s ability to act as an educational tool. The new facility and surrounding landscape will also accommodate a range of supplemental activities, allowing visitors to host birthday parties, picnic and hike in addition to sitting through classes.

The design develops distinct and processional zones that carefully lead visitors from the parking lot, through the entrance to the classrooms, and eventually to the trail head and the larger trail network within Alley Pond Park. These zones act as a transition between the urban and natural environments found within the site.

NYCDPR Design Excellence Program

Project with Leroy Street Studio