|Message from the Mayor and Commissioner||
|Putting Children First|
|Connecting People with the Waterfront|
|Greening New York|
|Rebuilding Neighborhood Parks|
|Funding our Initiatives|
|Friends of Parks|
|Download the report|
NEW YORK CITY’S PARKS ARE OUR VILLAGE GREENS. We gather in parks to swap tales, play chess, shoot hoops, find repose. We pause to hear the music of orchestras, songbirds, and rustling leaves, and to take in the beauty of grand trees, harbor views, and children at play. In our recreation centers, we find artistic, academic, and athletic enrichment; we make friends. And, from the anonymity of our city’s multitudes, we join ranks to enjoy and preserve these precious resources. We forge communities.
Parks & Recreation is the steward of nearly 28,700 acres of land, which make up 14 percent of New York City and include almost 4,000 individual properties, ranging from Yankee Stadium and Central Park to community gardens and greenstreets. We operate more than 800 athletic fields and nearly 1,000 playgrounds; we manage 550 tennis courts, 63 swimming pools, 35 recreation centers, and 14 miles of beaches; we care for 1,200 monuments and 22 historic house museums; we look after 500,000 street trees, and 2 million more in parks. We are New York City’s principal provider of athletic facilities. We are home to free concerts, world-class sports events, and cultural festivals.
This biennial report, Eight Seasons of Progress, highlights the five major initiatives we pursued in 2002 and 2003. With the help of non-profit and private partners, we used these initiatives to strengthen our parks and programs throughout the city.
PUTTING CHILDREN FIRST
Children are our top priority; they are New York City’s future and its most vulnerable population. To improve the health of our children, we developed new recreational facilities and designed innovative fitness and education programs.
CONNECTING PEOPLE WITH THE WATERFRONT
For the past 380 years, commerce and transportation cut off public access to New York City’s waterfront. With the leadership of Mayor Bloomberg, we built new river- and harbor-side parks, creating unprecedented opportunities for New Yorkers to recreate and relax along the water.
GREENING NEW YORK
Following decades of withering commitment, we renewed our dedication to horticulture by planting millions of flowers, restoring and creating world-class gardens, and developing new ways to green grey spaces and make parks more inviting.
REBUILDING NEIGHBORHOOD PARKS
Neighborhood parks are the heart of our agency. To enhance the parks that New Yorkers use most, we rebuilt older parks, fixed comfort stations, water fountains, and spray showers, strengthened our partnerships with local civic organizations, and attracted new volunteers.
FUNDING OUR INITIATIVES
Our non-profit and private partners helped fund park improvements and programs. To develop new opportunities for corporate and philanthropic involvement in parks, we created a Marketing and Corporate Sponsorship division.
The quality of our parks and the success of the initiatives covered in this report depend on the strength of our workforce and of our partners. By restructuring our operations and putting a new emphasis on training, we have improved agency communication and collaboration.