Parks Breaks Ground At Morris Mesa Playground In The BronxFOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Friday, November 3, 2006
Parks & Recreation Commissioner Adrian Benepe today joined City Council Member Maria Baez, State Senator Efrain Gonzalez, District Manager of Community Board #5 Xavier Rodriguez, Parks Chair of Community Board #5 Celestein Bess, Bronx Borough Commissioner Hector M. Aponte and fourth graders from C.E.S. 70 to break ground on Morris Mesa Playground in the Bronx’s East Tremont. Employees of the Bronx Lebanon Hospital Center, including vocal advocate for the park Sidney Flores, were also in attendance.
Funded by $500,000 allocated by City Council Member Maria Baez, the new playground will include state-of-the-art play equipment with safety surfacing, a spray shower, a security fence, a sitting area, and landscaping.
"This vacant lot will soon be transformed into a vibrant public space to better serve the needs of the East Tremont community," said Parks & Recreation Commissioner Adrian Benepe. "New parks are being created and old parks are being reconstructed all across the Bronx, and Morris Mesa Playground is just one example. Thanks to the allocation of capital funds by City Council Member Maria Baez, neighborhood children will soon be able to delight in an oasis of fun."
Morris Mesa is named in honor of the Morris family, prominent landowners that lived in the borough during the 1600’s. It also recognizes the geologic landform on which the park strip sits: a raised land formation with a flat top and steep cliffs. Morris Mesa, an urban mesa, has a raised vantage point and overlooks the Cross Bronx Expressway.
Over the past five years, Parks & Recreation has spent more than $113 million for Bronx park improvements, including new waterfront parks, greenways, and recreational facilities. Over the next five years, Parks will invest an additional $462 million to develop park projects in the Bronx, including more than $200 million from the construction of the Croton Water Filtration Plant. Current capital projects include the creation of a new park at the old Concrete Plant, the expansion of waterfront access at Regatta Park, and the development of the Bronx River Greenway which will connect the South Bronx and Westchester borders with a 15-mile bike and pedestrian path. In addition, new ball fields and athletic facilities are transforming the borough.