Conference House Park
The Daily Plant : Monday, December 19, 2005
Parks & Recreation Cuts The Ribbon On Historic Improvements To Staten Island’s Greenspace
On Thursday, December 15, Parks & Recreation Commissioner Adrian Benepe headed to Staten Island to celebrate the completion of two major projects in the "Borough of Parks." The day began at the South Beach Boardwalk where Commissioner Benepe helped formally open the borough’s newest waterfront restaurant and catering facility, the South Fin Grill and the Vanderbilt at South Beach.
South Beach and the boardwalk have regained their glory days," said Commissioner Benepe. "With the opening of the South Fin Grill and the Vanderbilt catering hall, visitors and local residents have all the more reason to come down to the boardwalk—any time of year."
The South Fin Grill and the Vanderbilt at South Beach catering hall opened their doors to patrons last summer and have become a popular destination for residents and visitors to enjoy a meal or attend an event with magnificent views of the Atlantic Ocean and Verrazanno Narrows Bridge.
The Vanderbilt catering hall can host up to 400 guests and boasts expansive glass openings showcasing the views of Lower New York Bay. The South Fin Grill boasts cutting edge modern interior design and seats about 120 people. During warm weather visitors can enjoy al fresco dining on the adjacent boardwalk.
Next it was off to Conference House Park to cut the ribbon on nearly $9 million in improvements to Conference House Park. Commissioner Benepe was joined by Borough President James Molinaro and community residents to celebrate the transformation of the historic 265-acre park.
For most of its life, Conference House Park remained an undeveloped swath of land. Funding for this reconstruction went to giving the park an identity. An intricate pathway system creates a link to the citywide network of greenways and connects the historic museum buildings, while a bicycle path replaces existing paved routes within the park. Additional work included a new entry drive, pathways, fitness trails, and a boardwalk that facilitates bird watching.
A handful of historic houses within the park were also renovated as part of the reconstruction. The visitor’s center, which will serve as the park’s hub and will eventually host a Native American educational center, was reconstructed and a new roof was installed. The nearby Biddle and Conference Houses underwent landscaping, while structural work was carried out on the Ward and Rutan-Feltch Houses.
Conference House Park sits on the location where British General Howe asked Benjamin Franklin to lay down his arms and not resist the British occupation during the Revolutionary War.
QUOTATION FOR THE DAY
"All art is autobiographical. The pearl is the oyster’s autobiography."
Directions to Conference House Park
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