February 2004 - Capital Project of the Month
Landscape Architect: Renata Sokolowski, James Titus
Architect: Richard Robbins
Specifications: Susan Cocker
Environmental Engineer: Yelena Lyubarskaya
Electrical Engineer: Magary Aime, Michael Enitan
Structural Engineer: Berc Kurkciyan
Mechanical Engineers: John Demenagas, Alex Fakayode
The new 22 acre Fairview Park is located within Community Board No. 3 and Council District No. 51 in the borough of Staten Island . Fairview Park is located between Englewood Avenue and Veterans Road West in the Charleston area of Staten Island . It is surrounded with moderately developed residential and commercial areas. The park is adjacent to Clay Pit Pond State Preservation Park on the north, Colonial Rifle and Pistol Club on the southwest, residential houses and a truck storage lot on the northwest and vacant natural areas on the east and south. These vacant areas are slated to be developed as a shopping mall and school with a significant portion to be left as a natural preservation area with a bikepath.
This Borough President, Council and Mayorally funded project will provide 22 acres of recreational facilities and passive areas for outdoor sport activities which will benefit children as well as adults from the neighborhood and adjacent communities.
The project will provide 9.5 acres of active recreation including 3 new ballfields, 2 athletic fields, 2 basketball and 4 tennis courts, safe access to 13 acres of passiverecreational area, a comfort station, maintenance building with fenced yard, parking and lighting. In addition, new plantings including new trees, shrubs and perennials complementing the native palette of existing planting in the area will be included. Also, new drainage, irrigation and water supply systems will be provided to enhance the viability and overall infrastructure of the park.
SITE HISTORYThe Charleston neighborhood was named Androvetteville in XVIIIth century. Throughout the latter half of XIXth century stood a thriving town of Kreisherville . Balthasar Kreisher for whom the town was named, came to New York City after the Great Fire of 1835 to help rebuilt the city. Trained as an architect and experienced in the craft of brick making, Kreisher began to search for clay, which he found at first in Woodbridge , N.J. He then set up a factory in Manhattan and manufactured firebrick, which was highly used in the chutes of fireplaces and more importantly in the construction of firewalls. Up until then the firebrick was imported from England . Kreisher established the first American competition to the British product.
In 1854, Balthasar Kreischer established a brick making factory on the shore of Arthur Kill , to the west of the project's site across the Arthur Kill Road in Staten Island . By 1890 the brickworks which employed 100-150 men and made some 20,000 bricks a day (3,500,000 a year) became the heart of the town known as Kreischerville that developed around it. The town consisted of workers' housing, a post office, a church, a grocery store and an Inn . On the project's site the company's owner built an Italianate mansion called Fairview due to its location on the highest point of the property.
Two additional houses for the Kreischer's sons were built along the Arthur Kill Road on the west of the park's property, one of which is still standing. When the brick factory closed in 1927, the town took the name Charleston . The project site is currently undeveloped. A number of trails are informally used for horseback riding which lead to and from the Clay Pit Pond State Park Preserve.