The largest state park in New York City has finally opened in Brooklyn.
On Tuesday, July 2, Governor Andrew Cuomo announced that the first phase of the Shirley Chisholm State Park is open on Jamaica Bay. The $20 million project is part of Cuomo’s “Vital Brooklyn” initiative, which plans to dedicate $140 million to the improvements of open spaces and creating programs in Brooklyn.
The park, located south of the Belt Parkway, offers 10 miles of trails for hiking and biking, and a bayside pier for picnicking and fishing along Pennsylvania Avenue, with water access. Several partnerships with community groups will also be added to park’s experience including educational programs for children planned with environmental groups like Audubon New York, and a new Shirley Chisholm State Park Bike Library that will offer free loaner bikes to ride around the park created in partnership with Bike New York. According to the announcement, the park will also have a vibrant mural created by Brooklyn artist Danielle Mastrion in honor of Chisholm—a Brooklyn native and the first African American woman elected to Congress in 1968, and the first African American woman to run for President during the Democratic primary in 1972.
During his press announcement, Cuomo added:
“Today we add another gem to our treasure trove of state parks, transforming what was once a blemish on the South Brooklyn community into exquisite open space. Shirley Chisholm fought to improve the health and wellness of underserved communities, a legacy we are carrying on through the Vital Brooklyn Initiative, so we are proud to dedicate this park in memory of her leadership and accomplishments.”
The second phase of the project is currently being designed, and will feature a “grand entrance” at Fountain Avenue, lawn patios, a patio overlooking Hendrix Creek, and pop-up environmental education facilities. The park is expected to be completed by 2021.
featured image source: Photo by Mike Groll for Office of Governor Andrew M. Cuomo
Also published on Medium.