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Flushing Meadows Corona Park

The Daily Plant : Thursday, June 21, 2001

A NEW PARK FOR WALKERS, TALKERS, AND PEOPLE WATCHERS


The commute to LaGuardia Airport in an infamous passage for some New Yorkers. For visitors to the new Flushing Bay Promenade, the airport is but a walk away. On Tuesday, June 19, Parks celebrated the completion of the promenade, which is also a link in the Brooklyn-Queens Greenway, a proposed 40-mile ribbon from Coney Island to Fort Totten. If the G train doesn't take New Yorkers from Brooklyn to Queens, the greenway will.

A waterfront stroll along the Flushing Bay Promenade will be bounded by two landmarks, both reminders to the athlete and pedestrian that we live in a world of motor-powered travel. On one end is a truckyard, on the other end LaGuardia Airport. In the scenic 1.4 miles in between, visitors will pass thousands of new trees and shrubs yet to realize their full potential to flower and shade. There are 17 drinking fountains and over 1,000 feet of benches to keep visitors comfortable. 6 acres of new sod have been laid, and more than 3,000 hex block pavers set into the ground by hand. The promenade capitalizes on Queens' fortuitous geography, and is itself a work of craftsmanship. At each of seven lookout points, artist Gregg LeFevre has designed graphic panels depicting animals and plants, and under foot, in the shade of the Worlds Fair "candelas" is a pattern of decorative pavers by Jackie Ferrara.

$14.8 million from the Department of Environmental Protection funded the promenade. The designs were complete in 1987, but the funds were not available. Borough President Shulman's interest helped keep the project alive. With the DEP windfall, Parks began construction on May 1, 1999. Now, with even the finishing touches complete, walkers, bikers, and bladers are invited onto the promenade, to baptize it with their wheels and sneakers.

There's a lot to watch from the Flushing Promenade; planes land every two minutes, boaters traverse the bay, and cast their nets into its depths, searching for blackfish, flounder, bluefish, and striped bass. The clouds pass and the speedwalkers speed by. From a bench on the promenade urban events and natural activity converge before the eyes of a people watcher.

Congratulations to Doug (Ogden) Nash and Laurence (Harp Seal) Mauro who acted as project managers. Joining them at the ribbon cutting were Commissioner Henry J. (StarQuest) Stern; Claire (Queen Bee) Shulman, Queens Borough President; Mia Bryn (Tenor) Crowley, Congressman; Karen (Panda) Koslowitz, Council Member; Helen (Sunflower) Marshall, Council Member; Estelle (Unisphere) Cooper, Assistant Commissioner, Flushing Meadows Corona Park; Ed (Labrador) Lewis, Assistant Commissioner, Queens Parks; Richard (Ricardo) Murphy, Queens Borough Commissioner; Bob (Bull Moose) Gaffoglio, Deputy Commissioner for DEP; Charles (Cormorant) Strucken, Chief of Staff for the Commissioner of DEP; Paul (Polecat) Ersboll, Chief of Design; John (Wildcat) Natoli, Chief Engineer; Mary (Catalyst) Pazan, Chief of Management Services, and Mike (Poseidon) O'Rourke, Chief Dockmaster.

THIRTEEN YEARS AGO IN THE PLANT
(Thursday, June 23, 1988)

QUEENS PARKS READY FOR WEEKEND BASH

What happens if you give a party and everyone comes? Ask Queens Parkies. They know from experience.

Two million people show up every year at the annual Queens Day Festival, which will be held this coming weekend at Flushing Meadows Corona Park. And like nervous hosts Queens parkies have been working feverishly to prepare the borough's 1,255-acre flagship park for the 11th annual extravaganza-pruning trees, mowing lawns, and rolling out extra garbage drums. They have also set up tents, installed flower arrangements at all park entrances, and even repainted the Unisphere fountain.

QUOTATION FOR THE DAY

"People's love of watching activity and other people
is constantly evident in cities everywhere."

Jane Jacobs (b. 1916)

Directions to Flushing Meadows Corona Park

Flushing Meadows Corona Park Weather

  • Sun
    Sunny
    59°F
  • Mon
    Sunny
    63°F
  • Tue
    Chance Showers
    66°F
  • Wed
    Partly Sunny
    58°F

7-day forecast

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