PROJECT: Niagara Gorge Access Project at Niagara Reservation State Park
LOCATION: Niagara Falls, New York
CLIENT: New York State Office of Parks
COST: $20 Million
Our team renovated the observation tower at the Niagara Reservation State Park and enhancing access points to the Falls on the American side of the Niagara River. The new structure will replace the existing 280-foot tower enclosure and cantilevered walkway designed by Robert Moses in 1958. The structure is the chief tourist destination on the American side of the Niagara Falls, connecting Frederick Law Olmsted’s historic parkland on the upper plateau to the Maid of the Mist boat dock located at the river edge.
Our design preserves the existing structure, reducing its height so that it is in scale with its surroundings. A reflective glass curtain wall dissolves the tower’s mass into reflections of the sky, escarpment, vegetation, rock strata, Falls, and mist.
The cantilevered platform that pierces the tower’s upper level has a new, safer railing, but its exposed-truss structure was retained so that it seems to hover above the river.
A new building, at the base of the tower, houses the Maid of the Mist ticket booths, a gift shop, public restrooms, upper-access elevators, and mechanical systems.
The project successfully completes the development of a series of landscape improvements enhancing the visitor experience to this unique landscape.