Work is finished on the two new park entrances along Flatbush Avenue side of the park, NYC Parks Commissioner Mitchell J. Silver, FAICP, and Prospect Park Alliance President Sue Donoghue announced, even though a proper ribbon cutting is yet to be scheduled for sometime in 2021.
Completed through the Parks Without Borders (PWB) Initiative, these are the first new entrances to the park since the 1940s.
“When you are fortunate enough to work for the city where you grew up, there are some things you do that hold not just professional, but personal significance. For me – this is that project,” said NYC Parks Commissioner Mitchell J. Silver, FAICP in a statement.
“When I was in High School, my brother and I would run around the park along Flatbush Avenue, and it always struck me that there needed to be an easier way to get into the park from there. Later on, this experience became my inspiration for creating the Parks Without Borders initiative to make green spaces all over the city more welcoming and easier to access. I am thrilled to see these pathways open today, to inspire and welcome all people into the park the way I had once only dreamed about.”
“Prospect Park Alliance is committed to making Prospect Park open and accessible to all communities it borders, and we are grateful to be able to open pedestrian access while work concludes on the site,” said Prospect Park Alliance President Sue Donoghue in the announcement.
“These new entrances will serve as an important gateway to the park for our east side communities, and to the park’s northeast corner, a focal point of our future restoration efforts.”
The $3.2 million project, funded by Mayor Bill de Blasio and designed by Prospect Park Alliance, includes a new entrance in the northeast section of the park near the former Rose Garden which is slated for future restoration, and a smaller entrance just north of the Prospect Park Zoo.
Both entrances feature new lighting, seating, and landscaping.
The major entrance opens onto a small public plaza with two levels of terraced seating that provides views of the surrounding woodlands and stepping stones lead to an informal running trail atop a berm.
The plaza also features a rock scramble of boulders sourced from the building site of the NewYork-Presbyterian Brooklyn Methodist Hospital in Park Slope.
The creation of these entrances is part of a comprehensive restoration of the Flatbush Avenue perimeter of Prospect Park.
Just a couple of months ago, a brand new protected bike lane was unveiled along the park on this stretch of Flatbush Avenue, making access even better for those residing on the South East side of the park.