Public Space Management | Downtown Alliance

Public Space Management

The Downtown Alliance works to keep Lower Manhattan looking its best. You'll see our staff hard at work tending seasonal flowers and plantings, installing holiday lighting and maintaining street furniture, and sprucing up public spaces. Our efforts make Lower Manhattan a beautiful place to live, work and visit.


Although known for tall buildings, the Alliance takes great pride in Lower Manhattan’s green spaces. Our team designs and maintains a variety of seasonal plantings and/or planters at the following locations: Bowling Green, Mannahatta Park, Trinity Park and Liz Berger Plaza, Albany Plaza, Water/Whitehall Plaza, Coenties Slip Plaza and Park, Gouverneur Lane, the NYSE security zone, and along Greenwich and Nassau streets.

Albany Plaza and Mannahatta Park were made possible by a grant from the Lower Manhattan Development Corporation, which is funded through Community Development Block Grants from the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development.

Water Street Enhancements

Based on recommendations from the Alliance’s 2010 Water Street: A New Approach report, Water Street continues to be upgraded.

To provide much-needed public space along the Water Street corridor, we collaborated with the Department of Transportation (DOT) to create three interim pedestrian plazas located at Water and Whitehall streets, Coenties Slip, and Gouverneur Lane.

Additionally, pedestrian sidewalk extensions (bump-outs) were added to enhance safety along the corridor by extending the sidewalk and shorten crossing distances. The Downtown Alliance maintains planters in these spaces to further distinguish the space.

In 2019, New York City’s Economic Development Corporation (NYCEDC) will be reconstructing the southern portion of Water Street creating permanent plazas at Water and Whitehall Streets and Coenties Slip, as well as widening the sidewalks and upgrading the plazas’ infrastructure. The Downtown Alliance will maintain the two permanent pedestrian plazas which will feature:

  • Large planters with seating
  • Additional landscaping
  • Movable tables and chairs
  • Concession kiosks
  • Benches
Tables and Chairs

As an amenity to the public, the Downtown Alliance sets out and maintains the tables and chairs at the following locations: Water and Whitehall Plaza, Coenties Slip Plaza, Gouverneur Lane, Albany Plaza, and the bumpout on Broad Street by Exchange Place.

Installation of Winter Holiday Decorations

Since the Downtown Alliance's founding in 1995, we have installed unique "shooting star" holiday lights throughout the district.

In 2015, Cooper Robertson, one of many Lower Manhattan-based architecture and design firms, won our design competition for a new iconic holiday light. This winning design was unveiled for the 2015 holiday season, and is on display from mid-November to mid-January.

Stone Street

One of the first paved streets in the "New World," Stone Street has been restored to its former glory. Storefronts that once stood empty and neglected are now home to some of the neighborhood's most successful and bustling dining destinations.

We partnered with the Landmarks Preservation Commission to designate Stone Street as a historic district, a move that allowed the Commission to apply for federal funds to restore the street. We also teamed up with the city's Department of Transportation and Department of Design and Construction to bring Stone Street back to life. The project, designed by Beyer Blender Belle Architects, set the stage for new commercial development while preserving Stone Street's historic charm.

The Downtown Alliance coordinated the Stone Street reconstruction. The city installed a new street bed, lined with cobblestones duplicating the street's original paving, and also laid new bluestone sidewalks and a granite curb. Old-style lighting fixtures were also installed. Stone Street has maintained its charming historic character while reinventing itself as Lower Manhattan's new "restaurant row."


Contact Us

Alliance for Downtown New York
120 Broadway, Suite 3340
New York, NY 10271
Tel: (212) 566-6700   Fax: (212) 566-6707
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