Highbridge Park


Wednesday, October 27, 2021
No. 105

NYC Parks Commissioner Gabrielle Fialkoff today joined Council Member Ydanis Rodriguez, Manhattan Borough President Gale Brewer, Assembly Member Carmen De La Rosa, Community Board 12 Chair Eleazar Bueno, and community members to cut the ribbon on the renovated Highbridge Water Tower at Highbridge Park in Washington Heights. The event included tours inside the tower led by the NYC Parks Urban Park Rangers.

“The Highbridge Water Tower connects us to our city’s history and serves as a beacon for the Washington Heights community–and thanks to this project, the historic structure will be preserved for generations to come,” said Commissioner Fialkoff. “Through educational tours with our Urban Park Rangers, New Yorkers will now be able to climb the tower’s winding stairway once again and experience the panoramic views from the top. We are thrilled to unveil the renovated tower as part of our ongoing revitalization of Highbridge Park.”

The project renovated the historic stone structure, preserving the landmark and restoring public access for tours for the first time in more than a decade. Needed repairs were made to the tower’s roof, masonry, wooden handrails, flooring and cast-iron staircase. The project also installed new windows, window guards and interior lighting.

The $5 million project was funded by $3.6 million from Mayor de Blasio and $1.4 million from Council Member Ydanis Rodriguez.

“I am proud to be joining Parks Commissioner, Gabrielle Fialkoff, Manhattan Borough President Gale Brewer, Assembly Member Carmen De La Rosa, and community residents as we unveil the newly renovated Highbridge Water Tower. This historic landmark has been in our community since the late 1800s, when it provided water pressure for the neighborhood,” said Council Member Ydanis Rodriguez. “I hope that this can become a place where local residents and New Yorkers visiting Northern Manhattan can enjoy the magnificent aerial view of the island of Manaháhtaan. I hope to continue working alongside the Parks Commissioner, Gabrielle Fialkoff, Northern Manhattan elected officials, and community leaders to ensure our parks are receiving the resources and investments they need.”

“Renovating the Highbridge Water Tower is a long-overdue improvement, and once again visitors will be able to tour inside this landmark and learn even more about New York history,” said Manhattan Borough President Gale A. Brewer.

“The investment to renovate the Highbridge Water Tower is a significant step forward for our community and the broader vision of parks equity,” said Assembly Member Carmen De La Rosa. “This monument stands as a testament to the rich history of the community and as a symbol of unity of the two communities that connect via the High Bridge. I look forward to everyone in the community enjoying this treasure for generations to come.”

The Highbridge Water Tower and adjacent High Bridge were once part of the Old Croton Aqueduct, the city’s first reliable and uninterrupted water supply system. Between 1872 and 1949, the tower provided water pressure for the neighborhood. The tower is a New York City Landmark and part of the Old Croton Aqueduct National Historic Landmark.

The NYC Parks Urban Park Rangers will lead free tours inside the Highbridge Water Tower starting in November. The tower is closed for public access at all other times. For information about upcoming Urban Park Ranger events, please visit our website.

Highbridge Park is named after the High Bridge, New York City’s oldest standing bridge and a historic passageway between Manhattan and The Bronx. In 2015, the restored bridge was reopened after being closed for more than four decades. The 130-acre park is part of the Anchor Parks Initiative, launched by Mayor de Blasio in August 2016 to invest in five large parks that serve as anchors for the community.

Directions to Highbridge Park

Know Before You Go

Recreation Centers
Highbridge Recreation Center

The gymnasium will be closed beginning August 12 as we address our facility's HVAC needs and to provide early voting services. We apologize for any inconvenience.

Recreation Centers
Highbridge Recreation Center

Please be advised that the Highbridge Recreation Center gymnasium will be closed for an Employee Recognition Event on October 19 from 1 p.m. to October 20, at 2 p.m. We apologies for any inconvenience caused.

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