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Van Cortlandt Park

The Daily Plant : Wednesday, February 14, 2001


The golf-themed design of a new playground tells, in imaginative detail, a history of the site that was once a part of the Mosholu Golf Links. The fairways were created in 1914 and redesigned in 1948 to accommodate the Major Deegan Expressway. 21 of the green acres were eliminated from the golf course and designated for park use in 1989. A new design, approved by the Art Commission January 8 and named Project of the Week February 5 will devote 1.2 of these acres to a golf-themed playground.

You've heard of mini golf. This is giant's golf. At the core of the playground, golf balls three feet in diameter are interspersed among 20-foot clubs. The clubs and the balls, labeled Mosholu 4, act as balance beams and climbing challenges. It all takes place at hole 19 as the sign on the flagpole reads, a flagpole that shares its essential feature with a spray shower. Kids, running through the playground's sprinkler system will feel all the delight of a golfer on the course after hours.

The design has the advantage of access on its side. In addition to the playground, a new entrance to Van Cortlandt Park will be created, and two gravel pathways that feed into the park from east and west. The paths will link the playground to the residential neighborhoods on either side, and pave a direct line from the last stop on the number 4 train. A new comfort station of Corinthian granite, with a pink and gray slate roof, will attract focus and transition passersby through a breezeway and into the playground.

The project is the work of Jim (Harmonicat) Mituzas, Project Manager; Rich (Ice) Robbins, Deputy Director of Architecture; Alex Fakayode, Mechanical Engineer; Michael Enitan, Mechanical Engineer; Jason (Shark) Ocharsky, Mechanical Engineer; and Susan Ellis, Specification Writer. $1.6 million in DEP mitigation dollars will fund the construction. When the playground is complete, we'll be able to ride the 4 to its final stop and watch golfers-in-training at the new playground on the Southeast corner of Van Cortlandt Park, at the intersection of West Gun Hill Road & Jerome Avenue, in the Bronx. Congratulations to the creators of the plan.


The Parks Library welcomes a new book onto its shelves. The Battery by Rodman Gilder is a gift from Warrie (WhirlyBird) Lynn Price, President of the Conservancy for Historic Battery Park. She presented the gift last week in the conference room to Commissioner Henry J. (StarQuest) Stern and Kate (Chama) Clark, Librarian. Many thanks to her for adding to our collection a book that promises to tell,

"The story of adventurers, artists, statesmen,
grafters, songsters, mariners, pirates, guzzlers,
Indians, thieves, stuffed-shirts, turn-coats,
millionaires, inventors, poets, heroes,
soldiers, harlots, bootlicks, nobles,
nonentities, burghers, marytrs,
and murderers who played
their parts during full
four centuries on


The Daily Plant yesterday, Tuesday, February 13 mistakenly printed that vocalist and jazz musician, Johnny Hartman wrote "He's Got the Whole World in His Hands." He did not write the song, which is an old spiritual, but it was one of his favorites.

(Wednesday, February 24, 1988)


It was standing room only in the Arsenal yesterday when over 200 Parks workers and their families jammed the third-floor Gallery for the First Annual Parks Employee Awards Ceremony. The Employee Awards Program is a culmination of the highly successful Employee of the Month program, initiated in 1987.

"Much of our time at Parks is spent dealing with troubling situations like fixing playground equipment or removing graffiti," commented Commissioner Stern who declared Febraruy 22 Annual Employee Awards Day. "However, management should also be involved in recognizing employees who do exceptionally good work. This ceremony does just that."


"The golf links lie so near the mill
That almost every day
The laboring children can look out
And watch the men at play."

Sarah Norcliffe Cleghorn (1876-1959)

And in honor of Valentines Day:

"Maybe love is like luck. You have to go all the way to find it."

Robert Mitchum (1917-1997)

Directions to Van Cortlandt Park

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