Ogden Plimpton Playground

Ogden Plimpton Playground

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

This playground takes its name from two avenues that border the property: Ogden Avenue and Plimpton Avenue. The park is also bordered by West 170th Street, and Edward L. Grant Avenue. Ogden Avenue and Plimpton Avenue were named for William B. Ogden (1805-1877) and George A. Plimpton (1855-1936), respectively.

William B. Ogden owned a nearby estate called “Villa Boscobel,” which overlooked the Harlem River. During his life, Ogden served in several capacities including as a real estate developer in New York, as the first mayor of Chicago (1837-1838), and as the first president of the Union Pacific Railroad (1862-1863). Ogden moved to the East to enjoy his retirement. His estate in the Bronx was ultimately broken up into 1,500 plots that were auctioned off over the course of four days. Ogden Avenue, which follows the path of a road that was called Highbridge Avenue in the mid-19th century, was named for Ogden in 1876. Plimpton Avenue was part of Highbridgeville, a village that was settled around 1851 by people who worked on the Croton Aqueduct system. The spot where Plimpton Avenue crosses West 169th Street was the southern border of the old Fordham Manor. George A. Plimpton, a publisher, educator, and treasurer of Barnard College, maintained a small estate nearby.

This playground was part of the Department of Housing, Preservation, and Development (HPD) Open Space Program, which constructed properties that were turned over to a community organization. Mid-Bronx Housing Development Fund Corporation (H.D.F.C.) maintained this playground until it was officially transferred to NYC Parks on October 16, 1997.

In 2019, Ogden Plimpton Playground reopened after a full reconstruction as part of the Community Parks Initiative – a multi-faceted program to increase the accessibility and quality of parks throughout the five boroughs in an equitable manner. The new design provides active play for toddlers and older children, as well as passive recreation spaces for senior citizens.  Ogden Plimpton Playground’s new design incorporates universal design principles, thereby providing accessible routes, seating, and inclusive activities for individuals of all abilities. 

Park Information

Directions to Ogden Plimpton Playground

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