ENTRY #413

Public Terrace for New Migrated by Gentaro Matsubara / Shingo Sekiya / Jeon Young-mi


Identify a public space

The site is Columbus Park in Manhattan. Columbus Park has always been a place for new immigrants from time to time. It was built in 1911 by the first urban renewal project in New York. One of the earliest site location to host multiple immigrants such as German Jewish community which created New York’s first garment district, Irish community, Italian community and recently Chinese immigrants sprawled out from China town is using large portion of the site. The site is adjacent to civic center facilities such as Criminal Court and US district Court on the West side and South side. On the East side is China Town and Italian community up in the North over Canal Street. Immigrants are minorities at the beginning of migration. They are the people who are willing to join community and to connect with society. Thus, Columbus Park is likely to be assembled as a place to speak out for new immigrants and new community. Columbus Park has great potential to be open to public with open minded community where you could learn history of the historical site and immigrants in a place right across civic center with city hall, close to financial district where decision making process of New York and economy are centered.

View the Current Space

Design Proposal

The northern part of Columbus Park would be retransformed spatially by three elements. First is “Public Terrace”. Second is “Public Box”. Third is “Park for Social Minors”. “Public Terrace” is a veranda surrounding the symbolic Pavilion of Columbus Park. Open Decks are placed on the ground floor of around pavilion for public markets and other community activities to meet new communities, tourists and new comers. On the 2nd floor veranda type open lodge is tide around the floor to sit and chat among small groups of community and visitors. In some occasions, it will be used as a stage for public announcements or demonstration. “Public Box” is a world smallest stage for speech with in the plaza in front of pavilion. As a daily use, the box can be used as sitting furniture, and on the special occasion, it can be used as a deck to hop on to speak to the surroundings. Another type of box is “History Box” which is a communication tool to learn about the history of the site about immigrants that used to live and work near around Columbus Park. The historical memory would spur the community and New Yorkers with informing the identity of the site. Sitting next to New York Criminal Court, “Park for Social Minors” is an atmosphere that will protect when someone can be socially MINORITISED after visiting Criminal Court. Families can take a good break in order to rest and go on forward.

View the Design Proposal


Columbus Park is owned by the New York City Department of Parks & Recreation, and managed by the department. In our proposal, civic leaders from surrounding community such as Little Italy, China Town, Public Corporation, Affordable Housing community, and historian or related department of immigrants would establish “Friends of Columbus Park” which take manage of the use of public space around pavilion. Public events such as public markets and community sessions across each community boundaries would strengthen the community network across races. “Community Design Center Columbus Park” would mange to inform future events and history of the site to surrounding residents and tourists with public and private funding based on memberships and revenue from educational forums and workshops, publications. It will raise the voice of the minority community enabling society a higher understanding of new community development with multi different cultures that could enrich the culture of the region and to the city. Construction actor can also be from international stakeholders from each immigrant community, which can let identify the culture of each community on either national level to private funding level. Those materials for historical memorial are funded from each international community enabling society to reach out those voices of the minorities which can motivate investors to participate on the project.


Gentaro Matsubara :He is graduate student major in urban design and Japanese city planning at Keio University Architectural and Urban Design Program,Japan. He took part in making a design proposal and read historical context in Upper side, Manhattan.

Shingo Sekiya :He is a researcher at Keio Research Institute at SFC in Japan. His major is Urban Design. He took part in Research, Urban Planning and Conceptual Planning of the design. His master thesis was on new york non-profitable Spatial Design Institutions in Urban Design Development under New York City Bloomberg Administration.

Jeon Young-mi :She is Japanese First Class Architect and Landscape Design, took part in the drawing and 3d modeling of the design. Currently works as Nikken Sekkei LTD, Urban Planning and Design Section. Her role was to put the idea in to spatial form.