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Official Website of the New York City Department of Parks & Recreation

Jamaica Bay - Rockaway Parks

A Partnership between the City of New York and the National Park Service

NYC Park; National Parks Service

People canoeing at Marine Park

Jamaica Bay Rockaway Parks restoration corps working at Floyd Bennett Field

Together, the National Park Service (NPS) and NYC Parks are working to manage the 10,000 acres of federal and city-owned parks in and around Jamaica Bay, and to encourage people to visit, learn about the area, and take advantage of all of its recreational activities. The two agencies will help connect more New Yorkers to the natural beauty and history of the Gateway National Recreation Area. The partnership is already working hard on restoring the region after Hurricane Sandy and improving recreation spaces, by adding more spaces for camping, making sure that visitors can reach Jamaica Bay by public transit, adding new food carts, expanding public programming, and providing seasonal bike and kayak rentals.

Visit the NPS website for more information about Gateway National Recreation Area

Joint Park Planning

The National Park Service has been developing a General Management Plan (GMP) for the Gateway National Recreation Area, which will reflect Parks’ and the NPS’ joint vision for the area. The GMP was released in early August 2013, and there is a 60-day public comment period until October 22, 2013, during which residents can give feedback and attend a public forum on the Partnership’s vision for the park.  Learn about the vision for the area and provide feedback on this plan.

Initiatives

Science and Resilience Institute

The new Science and Resilience Institute at Jamaica Bay, a component of Mayor Bloomberg’s SIRR, will bolster the city’s efforts to restore Jamaica Bay’s ecosystem, lead ongoing research on issues including sea-level rise and community resilience, and collaborate with the many scientific and community groups that are already working to restore the health of the Bay. The Institute is a collaboration between the City of New York, the National Park Service and the City University of New York (CUNY), which is leading a consortium consisting of Columbia University, Cornell University, NASA Goddard Institute for Space Studies, New York Sea Grant, Rutgers Institute of Marine and Coastal Science, Stevens Institute of Technology, Stony Brook University’s School of Marine and Atmospheric Sciences, and the Wildlife Conservation Society.  The Institute is launching its work in autumn 2013 with a public symposium focused on scientific research opportunities in Jamaica Bay. To learn more about “Urban Resilience in an Era of Climate Change: Global Input for Local Solutions” on October 17 and 18, 2013 and to RSVP, visit the NYC Department of Environmental Protection's webpage for the symposium.

Jamaica Bay/Rockaway Parks Restoration Corps

After the devastation of Hurricane Sandy, NYC Parks and NPS worked together closely, sharing materials and resources to repair the damage on our neighboring properties. NYC Parks, in collaboration with NPS, formed the Jamaica Bay/Rockaway Parks Restoration Corps, a six-month long program, begun in April 2013, that employed more than 200 local residents affected by the storm to help clean up their neighborhood. The Restoration Corps combines field work with on-the-job training in technical and professional development areas to enhance the productivity of workers in the field. Jobs are full time for six months and pay $11.11 per hour. The program has made a significant impact on Jamaica Bay’s recovery process; its workers have cleared debris and litter and helped create trails and restore natural areas. 

The Jamaica Bay/Rockaway Parks Restoration Corps was funded by the U.S. Department of Labor and the New York State Department of Labor, with assistance from the New York City Department of Small Business Services and the city Department of Youth and Community Development.

National Parks of New York Harbor Conservation & Resiliency Corps

This program, an initiative of the US Department of the Interior, is hiring hundreds of young adults from the region to assist in the Hurricane Sandy recovery efforts within New York City’s national parks and their neighboring city properties. The Corps' first project will focus on Gateway National Recreation Area and Jamaica Bay, and work is underway. 

Jamaica Bay-Rockaway Parks Conservancy

The Jamaica Bay-Rockaway Parks Conservancy supports the unique relationship between the City of New York and the National Park Service. The conservancy is a public-private partnership dedicated to improving the 10,000 acres of public parkland throughout Jamaica Bay and the Rockaway peninsula for local residents and visitors alike. With its partners at the National Park Service and NYC Parks, the Jamaica Bay-Rockaway Parks Conservancy works to expand public access to the area, increase recreational and educational opportunities, foster citizen stewardship and volunteerism; preserve and restore natural areas, enhance cultural resources, and ensure the long-term sustainability of the parklands, including the development of the Science and Resilience Institute at Jamaica Bay.

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