The changing demographic of the downtown Manhattan community and growth in family living has lead developers to create properties more suited to young families. There has been a surge in developments with exciting features such as children’s play spaces, catering to the needs and the desires of the modern downtown family.
Beekman Tower, also known as Eight Spruce Street and marketed as ‘New York By Gehry,’ is a 76 floor multipurpose structure designed by acclaimed architect Frank Gehry. Opening in 2011, the building is one of the tallest residential towers in the world and also includes street level retail, a public elementary school and space for the New York Downtown Hospital. The building’s developer, Forest City Ratner Companies, has partnered with New York City-based Apple Seeds, a premier, all-in-one children’s play space, to reimagine the 899 unit building’s on-site playroom.
Focusing on constructive and interactive play, Apple Seeds’ children’s play spaces have been recognized in New York magazine’s “Best of New York” issues. Their three existing spaces in Chelsea, the Upper West Side, and Peter Cooper Village Stuyvesant Town boast museum-quality permanent installations, including “construction city,” with a LEGO table, “the neighborhood,” with taxi and deli, and “the park” with shape-sorter flower garden and infant-geared crawling section. The children’s play space at New York by Gehry will feature many of the same exhibits, as well as a monthly live music performance for the building’s smallest residents. During the performances, children will be encouraged to interact through dancing, singing, and playing instruments.
Created by two couples with children, the co-owners of Apple Seeds, the space is set to embody a welcoming, enticing, and entertaining environment for the many families residing in the striking development. With developments such as Thirty Park Place, 11 Beach, and Battery Park’s River & Warren building including cleverly designed state-of-the-art children’s play spaces, it is safe to say this family friendly trend is here to stay.
– By Lizzie Crittenden