Rendering via MVVA and the Hudson Yards Development Corporation
The city on Friday renamed a park near Hudson Yards in honor of the late Bella Abzug, a former U.S. Representative of New York and stalwart supporter of the women’s rights movement. The greenspace, formerly Hudson Yards Park, stretches just over two acres between West 33rd and 36th Street. First developed with the extension of the 7 subway line to 34th Street, the park will soon be extended to 39th Street and run over an Amtrak rail cut.
Image: Wikimedia commons.
NYC Parks has announced that Mayor Bill de Blasio has allocated $75 million in additional funding for ongoing East River Esplanade reconstruction projects underway from East Midtown through East Harlem. The new funding has been allocated to three distinct esplanade projects: East Harlem from 114th to East 117th Streets, the Upper East Side from East 90th to East 94th Streets and Midtown East from East 62nd to East 63rd Streets.
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Concept rendering of Harlem River Greenway Link view toward RFK Bridge.
The NYCEDC, the NYC Parks department and NYC DOT announced today the results of a study on how to close the 32-mile loop of the Manhattan Waterfront Greenway along with plans to invest over $250 million to get the project started in Inwood, Harlem, East Harlem and Midtown. The Manhattan Waterfront Greenway announcement outlines a strategy for connecting open waterfront spaces that total over 1,000 acres that will add about 15 acres of quality open space and integrate the Greenway into surrounding neighborhoods.
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Via NYC Parks
A Long Island City parks group wants to change the name of Hunter’s Point South Park, a waterfront green space in the Queens neighborhood, the LIC Post reported on Thursday. The Hunters Point Parks Conservancy, a nonprofit organization that manages the 11-acre park, says despite being a “gem of Queens,” the park does not have “the city-wide recognition it deserves.”
Park image via Elliot Scott on Flickr; image of Silver via NYC Parks
Mitchell J. Silver, the commissioner of New York City Parks Department, tells us he’s 58 years old. But with his vibrant enthusiasm and energy for parks, fitness and life in general, it’s hard to believe. Only as he details a list of his achievements and accolades over the years does his age show. Silver, who oversees the management and operations of nearly 30,000 acres of city parks, calls himself the “commissioner of fun,” a title he strives to live up to every day. This summer, Silver launched “Cool Pools,” an initiative to renovate public pools, celebrated making Central Park car-free, and increased accessibility to parks for all New Yorkers. If you want to feel good, follow his Instagram and see him sliding, swinging, running, jumping, swimming, kayaking and more.
Silver is training for his first marathon this November (with his best friend from college) after completing four half marathons. 6sqft jogged beside the commissioner and got his running commentary on the biggest challenges facing NYC parks, what he attributes his success to, what we can expect for the future and where he buys his running gear.
© New York City Department of Parks & Recreation
Before iPads and air-conditioning, New Yorkers of all ages sought entertainment outside. And since backyards and open space in the city are practically non-existent, games took place outside of apartment buildings, spilling out onto the streets and sidewalks. Twentieth-century New Yorkers improvised games in streets and parks, including classics like kick the can, off the wall and stickball. Preserved and documented from an NYC Parks archivist, photos from this era will make you wistful for the simplicity of urban street games.
Long Island City community garden, photo via Quench Your Eyes on Flickr
With nearly 600 community gardens across New York City, picking just one to join can be difficult. GreenThumb, the largest community garden program in the country, wants to help connect New Yorkers with local gardens by hosting the first-ever Open Garden Day NYC. This Saturday, the organization will celebrate their 40th anniversary by opening more than 70 community gardens to the public, with lots of free, environmentally-friendly activities.
All photos courtesy of NYC Parks
To coincide with the opening of all 53 public pools yesterday, the city’s ever cool and joyful parks commissioner Mitchell Silver launched the Cool Pools NYC pilot program. The initiative gave a colorful makeover to five outdoor pools, one for each borough, in underserved neighborhoods. Prior to Cool Pools NYC, none of these sites had a major renovation since they were built in the 1970s. In addition to the cheery paint jobs, these pools have been outfitted with polar-themed art, lounge chairs, and landscaping and will offer drop-in fitness classes for adults and obstacle courses and scavenger hunts for kids. Read more
Photo via Geoff Stearns on Flickr
A report released Tuesday by the Center for an Urban Future found that while city parks are seeing record use by the public, officials have underinvested in their basic maintenance and infrastructure for decades. The average city park underwent its last major renovation in 1997, despite being on average 73 years old. The think-tank estimates an investment of $5.8 billion over the next decade is needed to address the repair and replacement of existing infrastructure, a number which does not include the cost of constructing new structures.
“The subway system isn’t the only vital piece of infrastructure in New York that is aging and in need of investment,” Jonathan Bowles, executive director of CUF, said in a statement. “Parks in every borough are experiencing infrastructure problems brought by age and magnified by record usage and decades of under-investment in parks maintenance.”
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With Memorial Day Weekend just around the corner, it’s hard not to imagine the taste of savory barbecue food like hot dogs and hamburgers, chicken wings and corn on the cob. And while our tiny apartments in New York City may not always be the greatest spots to host a barbecue, the city’s parks provide some of the best places to get your grill on this summer. Ahead, 6sqft rounded up 15 of the best parks to host outdoor barbecues, from old standby Prospect Park to less known locales like Clove Lakes Park in Staten Island.
Find out the best BBQ spots in your neighborhood