Albert Capsouto Park

The Daily Plant : Monday, November 16, 2009

New Park in Tribeca Is Green Gateway to Manhattan

Photo by Daniel Avila

On November 12, Commissioner Adrian Benepe joined State Assemblywoman Deborah Glick, City Council Member Alan Gerson, U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) Director of Planning and Community Development Vincent Hom, Community Board 1 Tribeca Committee Chair Peter Braus, and SoHo artist Elyn Zimmerman to celebrate the opening of CaVaLa Park in Tribeca. The $3.4 million park, bounded by Canal, Varick, and Laight Streets, is funded by a $2.4 million grant from HUD allocated by the LMDC in addition to $500,000 from the Paul and Irma Milstein Foundation, and $556,000 from the Office of the Mayor.

“CaVaLa Park is Manhattan’s newest park, and today’s ribbon cutting is part of a $300 million program to create and refurbish green spaces in lower Manhattan since 2001 with the support of HUD and LMDC,” said Parks & Recreation Commissioner Adrian Benepe. “The park features lush plantings, new benches and a centerpiece fountain, designed by local artist Elyn Zimmerman, which is inspired by the site’s history. The new CaVaLa Park improves the quality of life for this historic and dynamic section of New York and increases recreational opportunities for all those who live in, work in and visit lower Manhattan.”

Most recently a paved parking lot, CaVaLa Park is a vital new public space. The design of this new park by Parks Capital Designer Gail Wittwer-Laird and SoHo artist Elyn Zimmerman looks forward with its contemporary art and detailing and also pays homage in its structure and layout to some of Manhattan’s oldest pocket parks. The design was given an award for Excellence in Design from the New York City Public Design Commission in 2007.

The park’s new plantings include a double row of canopy and street trees and three large planting beds filled with low flowering shrubs and colorful perennials. Nestled into the edges of the planting beds are several continuous rows of contemporary benches and a small cluster of chess tables at the southwestern gate. At each of the three entrances to the triangle are etched stainless steel plaques with images from the New York Historical Society, New York Public Library and Library of Congress that tell of the areas urban evolution.

A 114-foot long sculptural fountain by Elyn Zimmerman bisects the interior space. Water spills from an 8-foot tower into a series of stepped “locks” evoking the canal that once flowed along the Canal Street. A sunning lawn rises up to meet the fountain from the south and granite seat walls adorn the fountain to the north.

The ribbon-cutting on CaVaLa Park represents $300 million invested to create and refurbish green spaces in lower Manhattan since 2001 with the support of HUD and LMDC. CaVaLa Park is part of the Open Spaces II sub-recipient agreement between the New York City Department of Parks & Recreation and the LMDC in the amount of $20,270,000, in which seven open spaces in Lower Manhattan are being revitalized. The other parks included in this agreement are James Madison Plaza, Sara D. Roosevelt Park, Allen/Pike Malls, Collect Pond Park, Washington Market Park and the Battery Carousel. CaVaLa Park is one of the more than 30 parks and open spaces that LMDC has aided in the revitalization or creation since 2001.


“In order to be irreplaceable one must always be different.”

Coco Chanel
(1883 - 1971)

Park Information

  • Capsouto Park Ribbon Cutting
  • Capsouto Park Aerial
  • Capsouto Park
  • Capsouto Park Fountain
  • Capsouto Park

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