Little Island, a new, free public Park pier within the larger Hudson River Park, opened to the public on May 21, 2021, providing New Yorkers and visitors from around the world with a unique green space unlike any other in New York City. Planned in partnership with the Hudson River Park Trust, Little Island was funded primarily through Barry Diller and the Diller-Von Furstenberg Family Foundation through an extraordinary philanthropic gift to the Hudson River Park.
The pier is open daily, and its hours are currently as follows:
- Little Island is currently open from 6:00 AM–9:00 PM
Visit littleisland.org for important information to know before you go.
Components of the pier, nestled among more than 350 species of flowers, trees and shrubs, include a 687-seat amphitheater and an intimate stage and lawn space, along with dazzling views of other portions of Hudson River Park, New York City and the Hudson River.
Little Island was designed by Thomas Heatherwick of Heatherwick Studio, with landscape design by Signe Nielsen of MNLA. The landscape provides a visually surprising and inspiring experience as visitors walk across the park. The plantings are varied to provide an environment that changes with the seasons, with flowering trees and shrubs, fall foliage and evergreens. More than 66,000 bulbs and 114 trees have been planted, some of which will grow to 60 feet tall.
Designed by Heatherwick Studio, Little Island’s distinct exterior is supported by concrete piles. On top of the piles, 132 concrete “tulips” make up the structure of the park. Each tulip’s shape is unique and has a different weight load capacity to hold the soil, lawns, overlooks and trees. The original Pier 54 piles remain to provide habitat for aquatic life.
“What was in my mind was to build something for the people of New York and for anyone who visits — a space that on first sight was dazzling, and upon use made people happy.”
— Barry Diller
In November 2014, Hudson River Park Trust and Barry Diller/Diane von Furstenberg announced a plan to replace the dilapidated Pier 54, envisioning an extraordinary new pier combining public Park and performance space. The Trust worked with the Diller-von Furstenberg Foundation to conceive a new 2.7-acre public pier dedicated to parkland with performing arts programming. The park was designed by UK -based Heatherwick Studio and the landscape, by Signe Nielsen of MNLA, conceived as a place where New Yorkers and visitors can have an immersive experience with nature and art.
Construction of Little Island advanced first through completion of the piles and the signature “pots” supporting the pier deck, to the installation of landscape and other site furnishings. Little Island is now open, and the Diller-von Furstenberg Foundation funded the vast majority of this extraordinary project.
During construction, Little Island also conducted significant outreach to local community and arts organizations and has begun developing arts programming concepts and partnerships for the pier.