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DDC Project at Wave Hill Public Garden & Cultural Center Receives Design Award From the Society of American Registered Architects

DDC: Ian Michaels, 646-939-6514,

(Long Island City, NY – February 23, 2023) Commissioner Thomas Foley of the NYC Department of Design and Construction (DDC) announced today that the agency’s recent project to improve safety and access at the entrance of Wave Hill, a public garden and cultural center in the Bronx, has been recognized with a Merit Award from the Society of American Registered Architects (SARA) as part of its 2023 SARA California Design Awards.

public entry gatehouse

A new historically accurate gatehouse was part of the $3.5 million project to revamp Wave Hill’s public entry area and parking lot

“Many New Yorkers may be surprised to know that through our Project Excellence program the City’s new libraries, cultural centers, firehouses and other public buildings are created by some of the country’s best design firms,” said DDC Commissioner Thomas Foley. “This project improved the visitor experience at Wave Hill and replaced the existing gatehouse with a new structure that honors the site’s historic nature.”

“The NYC Department of Cultural Affairs is proud to work alongside DDC to invest in and build cultural infrastructure that is more beautiful, sustainable, and accessible for all New Yorkers," said NYC Cultural Affairs Commissioner Laurie Cumbo. "This wonderful project at Wave Hill is a great example of how this amazing partnership can benefit our city, and we thank the Society of American Registered Architect for this exciting recognition." 

“Wave Hill is so pleased to have received SARA’s 2023 Merit Award,“ commented Wave Hill’s Vice President and COO Michele Rossetti. “Our new gatehouse provides a more welcoming and gracious experience for all our visitors. Our goal was to build a new structure that complimented the other historic homes on the property, while enhancing accessibility, safety and amenities for visitors and staff.  We’re thrilled that this beautiful addition to Wave Hill accomplishes all that.” 

The project, which ended in 2021 and cost $3.5 million to build, reconstructed Wave Hill’s public entry with a new pedestrian entrance and pathway with upgraded lighting. The parking lot was repaved and nearby retaining walls that had deteriorated were replaced. New wall lighting and safety bollards were also added to the parking area.

public entry gatehouse

Wave Hill’s public entry areas now includes a new gatehouse as well as a new pedestrian entrance and pathway with upgraded lighting

Also included was a new gatehouse to replace an older one that had deteriorated near the garden’s entry. The new gatehouse was designed to be historically accurate, keeping with the landmark status of the site, and includes telecom and fiber optic capability for staff.

The design of the project was completed by CTA Architects under DDC’s Project Excellence program, which pre-qualifies firms to provide design services for City public buildings projects, reducing the time required to procure design services while ensuring the highest levels of quality and professionalism in construction projects managed by the agency. In March 2022, DDC announced 20 firms that have been selected to provide architectural design services in the current round of Project Excellence, including ten Minority- and Women-Owned Business Enterprises (M/WBEs).

Wave Hill is a 28-acre City-owned public garden and cultural center overlooking the Hudson River and Palisades in the Bronx. It is a landmarked site located within a Special Natural Area District. The center describes its mission as “to celebrate the artistry and legacy of its gardens and landscapes, to preserve its magnificent views, and to explore human connections to the natural world through programs in horticulture, education and the arts.”

DDC previously completed a renovation of Wave Hill House, a close to $10 million project that was a partnership between the City of New York, New York State and a group of devoted private supporters. The renovation of the building improved ADA accessibility, repaired water damage, upgraded lighting, plumbing and HVAC and replaced the boiler.

About the NYC Department of Design and Construction
The Department of Design and Construction is the City’s primary capital construction project manager. In supporting Mayor Adams’ long-term vision of growth, sustainability, resiliency, equity and healthy living, DDC provides communities with new or renovated public buildings such as firehouses, libraries, police precincts, and new or upgraded roads, sewers and water mains in all five boroughs. To manage this $15.5 billion portfolio, DDC partners with other City agencies, architects and consultants, whose experience bring efficient, innovative and environmentally conscious design and construction strategies to City projects. For more information, please visit