Daily digest: Toronto’s parks aren’t ready for summer, Manhattan’s Pier 76 opens, and more

Summer Lovin'

Daily digest: Toronto’s parks aren’t ready for summer, Manhattan’s Pier 76 opens, and more

Pier 76 is now officially open on the Hudson River (Courtesy the Flickr of New York Governor Andrew Cuomo)

Happy Thursday and welcome back to another roundup of the going-ons in the art and architecture worlds. As the mercury rises, so too have the stories about parks, as these vital public gathering spaces prepare (or don’t) for summer.

Here’s what you need to know today:

Toronto’s public parks didn’t weather the pandemic too well

Even as temperatures soar and Torontonians flock to the parks, public amenities like bathrooms and water fountains remain shuttered as the government scrambles to catch up. Another victim of the current austerity budget is Toronto Island Park, which is seeing longer ferry lines than ever as capacity was cut during COVID, and plans to replace the aging boats have stalled.

H/t to The Globe and Mail

France is sending over another Statue of Liberty

A 10-foot-tall replica of the Statue of Liberty cast from an 1878 plaster mold is coming to the United States and will be installed on Ellis Island in New York City from July 1 through July 5. The 992-pound bronze statue is a 1/16th scale replica of its bigger sister, and after leaving New York, will travel to its final home in Washington, D.C. It will actually be the third Statue of Liberty in New York this summer, as a lounging Lady Liberty has been hanging out in Morningside Park for months, where it will remain through next April.

H/t to CNN

Sonic Bloom will rise in the heart of London

drawing of multicolored pipes and tubes
Sonic Bloom (Courtesy of Mayfair)

A cacophonic, multisensory sculpture is coming to Brown Harts Garden in London on August 23. Sonic Bloom, curated by Alter-Project and designed by sound artist and musician Yuri Suzuki, will allow guests to not only share their voices through the project’s sprawling tubes, but also upload their messages online and digitally convert them into flowers.

L.A. expands its free public transit program

A program to give free bus and train rides to low-income residents and students has gotten the green light in Los Angeles, as the proposal was approved by the Los Angeles County Metropolitan Transportation Authority on May 27. K-through-12 students will be enrolled starting in August while low-income riders will have the chance starting in 2022, though it’s likely federal funding will be needed to expand the program into next year.

H/t to CBS Los Angeles

Pier 76, a former tow pound, reopens as a public park in Manhattan

The $31 million conversion of a former riverside tow pound at Pier 76 in Manhattan  is finally complete, and the new park officially opened to the public yesterday, June 9. The newest addition to Hudson River Park is a bit empty at the moment (mainly it’s just a blank slab with benches covered by a steel pergola that runs the full 725 feet of the pier), but Governor Andrew Cuomo promised plenty of future programming for the site.

H/t to 6sqft

NYC is doling out grants to over 3,000 artists to help them stay afloat

The pandemic has been hard on everyone, but the pain was acutely felt by the arts and culture sector. Now, New York City has not only announced the creation of its City Artist Corps, but this week revealed that they would be giving $5,000 to 3,000 artists from across all five boroughs. All of the artists involved will be commissioned for public projects across the city; additionally, 60 artists will be commissioned by the New York City Housing Authority (NYCHA) to install temporary art at NYCHA properties. Another 400 artists will teach at the city’s Summer Rising program, which engages students to make public art from across 200 NYC schools—that brings the total of supported artists up to 3,460.

H/t to Hyperallergic