Spring and summer are all about getting outdoors and enjoying the fresh air, and NYC’s public spaces–such asBushwick Inlet Park–are the perfect places for NYers to catch some rays.
But green spaces aren’t the only places to hangout in the warm weather–we’re talking about public plazas, such as these two in Lower Manhattan.
In July of last year, NYC Parks Commissioner Sue Donoghue and NYC Department of Environmental Protection (DEP) Commissioner Rohit T. Aggarwala cut the ribbon on two plazas in Lower Manhattan, giving the public space to enjoy the great outdoors at the intersection of Grand and Lafayette Street and East 4th Street between Bowery and Lafayette.
“As the weather heats up, our public spaces become only more important to keeping New Yorkers cool and able to enjoy the outdoors,” said NYC Mayor Eric Adams in a press release.
“Manuel Plaza and Rapkin-Gayle Plaza are perfect examples of investments in our public realm that make our city more beautiful, more enjoyable, and more resilient for years to come,” added Adams.
The green spaces feature seating, greenery, drinking fountains, and synthetic turf areas for recreation.
Rapkin-Gayle Plaza, located at the intersection of Grand and Lafayette Streets, is named in honor of Chester Rapkin and Margot Gayle, two important figures in SoHo history.
Manuel Plaza, on East 4th Street between Bowery and Lafayette Street, is named in acknowledgment of the first North American free Black settlement, known as the “Land of the Blacks.”
“These new plazas raise the bar for what public space can be in New York City, with a beautiful and creative design, native plants that are both beautiful and ecologically sensitive, and a resilient infrastructure that will protect us from major flood events,” said Manhattan Borough President Mark D. Levine.
“I’m grateful to the DEP and the Parks Department for the collaboration that made these projects possible,” Levine added.