This Florida Island Plaza Will Float Like a Rising Submarine

Shaunacy Ferro

An expanded waterfront park in West Palm Beach will soon be getting a plaza that floats atop a lagoon like a submarine. The peninsula extension of Currie Park is part of a master plan designed by Italian architect Carlo Ratti, the director of MIT’s Senseable City Lab.

Located in the Lake Worth Lagoon between West Palm Beach and Palm Beach, the floating plaza stays above the water using air chambers that open and close to take in or release water based on the weight of the crowds above it. Much of the floating park will be below sea level, and if looking at the surrounding water isn’t enough, there will be water plazas and pools within it. It will also feature an auditorium and a restaurant that will grow its own hydroponic food onsite.

A previous estimate put the cost of Ratti’s work at $520,000, to be paid for by the city of West Palm Beach and the billionaire developer who owns land near the park. The project is scheduled to be completed by late 2018, the architecture firm told mental_floss in an email.

All images courtesy Carlo Ratti Associati.