New York City’s Lincoln Center Sprouts Up Its Plaza

Photo Credit: Lincoln Center

Eyeing a new and most ‘gramable “moment” on the Upper West Side? Look no further than the grand dame of all city’s squares, the Lincoln Center’s Josie Robertson Plaza. Sure, you might equate that scene to ballets, operas, and fashionistas’ struts during a short-lived New York Fashion Week, and you wouldn’t be wrong. However, the Center’s reinvigorated effort to welcome a new generation of grass grazing Millennials and those off-put by its grand airs without alienating a long-standing group of fans and doners has dramatically re-imagined the plaza into one exciting green space.

Starting this week New Yorkers will be invited to experience “The GREEN,” a reimaged urban lawn that celebrates the iconic plaza, fountain, and the open space bookended by famous edifices designed by Max Abramovitz, Wallace Harrison, and Philip Johnson.

Photo Credit: Lincoln Center

“When invited to consider how the physical space of Josie Robertson Plaza could be re-envisioned to be a more inclusive and inviting environment, I immediately thought that by changing the ground surface from hard paving stones with no seating to a material like grass, suddenly anyone would be able to sit anywhere,” said in a statement the award-winning Broadway set designer Mimi Lien. As part of her vision, the concrete area was covered in a 14,000-square-foot patch of recyclable, biobased “SYNLawn” verdure turf that resembles real grass. The setting beguiles not only lounging on turf-covered armchairs; there are some fun art interactions in-store thanks to sculptures installed throughout the area. The green grass scheme doesn’t only liven up the concrete plaza that has always been the heart of the city’s cultural hub. With the reopening project named Restart Stages, a collaboration that reimagines and reactivates public space for the post-pandemic era, the GREEN will play host to rotating food vendors, unique pop-up activations, and an occasional outdoor concert and performance. Catch the action through the end of September.