NYC is full of historical hidden treasures, and the newly restored Endale Arch under Park Drive in Prospect Park is definitely one of them.
This arched walkway dates back to the 1860s, when it was created by Park founders Frederick Law Olmsted and Calvert Vaux to offer a peaceful transition from Grand Army Plaza to the Park’s spacious Long Meadow. At the time it was called “a thing of beauty” by the New York Times, according to Park records.
Still, over the years it began to fall into disrepair, with the wood panels needing to be replaced because of water damage and anti-graffiti paint obscured artistic details.
Five years ago, the Prospect Park Alliance decided to begin restoring the historic featured. This involved:
- Stabilizing the stone retaining walls
- Adding native plants (and removing invasive species)
- Addressing drainage issues that led to the original water damage
- Restore the interior wood arch and exterior stonework
As the layers of paint and dirt were stripped back, even more beautiful discoveries were uncovered, such as the “alternating color motif—on the exterior of yellow Berea sandstone and New Jersey brownstone, on the interior white pine and black walnut wood paneling,” that was hidden for almost a century.
Now New Yorkers can see what the arched actually looked like over 150 years ago! With the help of new, modern LED lighting that is. The lighting helps really highlight the beautiful craftsmanship of the feature.
The arch was be found at the north end of Prospect Park here:
featured image source: Credit Paul Martinka, via @prospect_park