Stan Eckstut Quoted in Crains 25 Big Ideas

1. Rethink Governors Island

It’s an architect’s fantasy: a glorious 172-acre canvas in the heart of New York Harbor. The city takes full control of it in July and plans an 87-acre park. The rest is up for grabs, except for developers of casinos or permanent housing—uses forbidden in the federal deed. But an island with no cars and one-of-a-kind views just a few minutes by ferry from Manhattan or Brooklyn deserves more than the usual RFP process.

GO BIG OR GO HOME. Such a spectacular setting should share the symbolism and ideals of its neighbors—the Statue of Liberty, Ellis Island—and, like them, celebrate our embrace of the rest of the world. Relocate the United Nations here. Or house a major institution dedicated to solving global issues, such as world hunger.
—Paul Katz, president, architecture firm Kohn Pedersen Fox Associates

WATER, WATER EVERYWHERE BUT NOT A DROP OF THINK. Less land planning, more waterfront focus. This former Coast Guard base’s shoreline offers so many maritime possibilities. Carve out and cart away some of the land mass—part of the island was made from landfill—to create a large harbor on the east side for sailing, fishing, kayaking and more.
—Stanton Eckstut, founding principal, Ehrenkrantz Eckstut & Kuhn Architects

ALL BETS ARE ON. All bets are on Change the law to allow no-slots gambling and develop a posh resort to attract high rollers who now spend their money elsewhere. There are no residents to object, and it would generate billions in tax revenues that would more than fund the island’s other public aspirations.
—Vishaan Chakrabarti, director, real estate development program, Columbia University’s Graduate School of Architecture, Planning and Preservation

Crain's New York, June 28, 2010