Steel mesh will be used to improve safety of the 150ft structure

A Manhattan sculpture designed by Thomas Heatherwick will return after being closed following a string of suicides as safeguarding measures have now been introduced. 

The new safety measures will include a steel mesh stretching from the floor to the ceiling of the structure.  


Source: Francois Roux/Shutterstock

The Vessel, New York

Located in Hudson Yards, the 150 ft structure, known as the ‘Vessel’, was built at a value of $260 million but was shut down three years ago after four people jumped from the building and died. 

The first suicide was in February 2020. By 2021, the structure was closed following two more suicides within a month. It reopened later that year but was permanently closed following a fourth suicide two months after it reopened. 

> Also read: ‘Who are we designing for?’ Thomas Heatherwick wonders why buildings have become so boring

Before 2021, the UK design firm, Heatherwick, had looked into how to improve the safety of the structure and said that tests need to be conducted in order to find a practical solution with regards to “installation” and “engineering.”

Stephen Ross, chairman of Related Companies, the developer which runs Hudson Yards said in 2021 that he thought all appropriate initiatives had been implemented to stop further suicides. 

Hudson Yards, which is a $25 billion project, was the biggest private development in American history when it opened in 2019.