Parks & Recreation 2002-2003 Biennial Report
Eight Seasons of Progress

Message from the Mayor and Commissioner
Putting Children First
Connecting People with the Waterfront
Greening New York
Rebuilding Neighborhood Parks
Funding our Initiatives
Parks People
Friends of Parks
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Message from the Mayor and Commissioner

Dear Friends,

We routinely refer to New York as “the greatest city in the world.”

Commissioner Adrian Benepe, Deputy Mayor Patricia E. Harris, and Mayor Michael R. Bloomberg at Rainy Park in Astoria, Queens.No city – not even one with our well-documented brand of self-assurance – could ever make that claim without an outstanding park system. Every day, at any moment, New Yorkers have the opportunity to ease out of the animated flurry of city life and step into one of our uniquely diverse and superior parks. They are the product of centuries of development, both natural and man-made, as well as a daily commitment of time and talent by thousands of our fellow citizens.

This report covers the past two years – a period in which we grew our parks in remarkable ways and began to fulfill our vision for an even richer future.

We must, and we will, continue to focus on several priorities: providing places for children to play, adults to exercise, and seniors to relax. We will reconnect New Yorkers to our magnificent waterfront and introduce visitors to our trees and open spaces.

None of this could be possible without the continued dedication of Department of Parks & Recreation staff, the support of elected officials, the generosity of private businesses, and the hundreds of park support groups, large and small, that have invested their resources into the care and improvement of our city’s open spaces.

We look forward to the years ahead as we partner with all of you to green our neighborhoods and create better opportunities for our children. Please read through this biennial report and let us know how you might like to work alongside us by calling 311.


Mayor Michael R. Bloomberg's signature Commissioner Adrian Benepe's signature

Michael R. Bloomberg, Mayor

Adrian Benepe, Commissioner

MISSION STATEMENT Young girl skips rope in Nelson Playground, Bronx

As stewards of nearly 14 percent of New York City’s land, the Department of Parks & Recreation builds and maintains clean, safe, and accessible parks citywide and programs those parks with recreational, cultural, and educational activities for people of all ages. Through this work, Parks improves people’s lives, providing outlets for creative expression, opportunities for healthy recreation, and exposure to the restorative beauty of the natural world.


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