Greenstreets is the most extensive urban beautification initiative in New York City since the start of citywide neighborhood street tree planting in the early twentieth century. Under the Greenstreets program, Parks has converted thousands of unused concrete and striped islands formed by the city’s intersecting streets into leafy, ‘pint-sized’ parks. These triangles, medians, and curbside bump-outs not only beautify the urban landscape, but also calm busy traffic, increase pedestrian safety, and capture stormwater for irrigation. First launched in 1996, Greenstreets has been completely reinvigorated by Mayor Bloomberg’s PlaNYC through the first-ever dedicated program funding.
Under PlaNYC, the Greenstreets initiative has received $8.5 million to create 480 new sites by 2017, with additional funding for maintenance. A 2007 survey indicated that there are 2,281 Greenstreets in neighborhoods across the city comprising a total of 204 acres, almost half the size of Brooklyn’s Prospect Park. By 2017, there will be over 2,760! Since the launch of PlaNYC, we have completed 257 new sites throughout the five boroughs.