Macombs Dam Park

Summit Playground

This text is part of Parks’ Historical Signs Project and can be found posted within the park.

This playground, like Summit Avenue, is named for the area’s higher elevation and impressive view. Unlike many New York roadways, Summit Avenue has retained its original name for a century.

In 1914 the Parks and Playgrounds Association established new playgrounds in eight Bronx parks. The playground at Macomb’s Dam Park opened in the summer of that year with sand boxes and basketball courts as well as shoot-the-chutes (slides), seesaws, and swings for different age groups. According to the 1914 Annual Report of the Department of Parks, children were “drawn to these playgrounds where they were able to give full vent to their excess of feelings, and enjoy to the fullest extent those kinds of exercise which were conducive to their well-being both mentally and physically.”

Yankee Stadium, to the east, was built in 1923 and became home to great baseball heroes and legends. Babe Ruth Memorial Stadium, dedicated to baseball favorite George Herman “Babe” Ruth, further enhanced the facilities of Macomb’s Dam Park. In 1936 the park benefited from the installation of a fountain by Martin Schenck and Arthur V. Waldregon. Known as Macomb’s Dam Fountain, it consists of a large granite basin ornamented with carved limestone dolphins and a lion’s head.

Summit Playground and Summit Avenue overlook the Major Deegan Expressway. Parks acquired this site, situated at 161st Street and Summit Avenue, through condemnation on March 18, 1897. It features trees, benches, and play equipment, including two bars for leg stretching and a slide. A wrought iron fence surrounds the park, and beyond the playground are rock outcroppings, trees, and grass.

Park Information

Directions to Macombs Dam Park

Was this information helpful?