The Daily Plant : Friday, June 13, 2003
RIVERSIDE PARK SOUTH GETS NEW WATERFRONT PARK
Set against the background of the majestic Hudson, Donald J. Trump formally handed over the deed to Phase 2 of Riverside Park South yesterday at a ceremony which included some of New York's most prominent developers, live jazz and theatre performances, ecological activities, and an exciting crab race.
This $8.5 million installment of the park is part of a planned $60 million park connecting Riverside and Hudson River Park. Hudson Waterfront Associates, a partnership of several Hong Kong investors and Mr. Trump, constructed and paid for this park addition as part of the Riverside South project, a residential and commercial development over looking the Hudson. Hudson Waterfront Associates is building Riverside Park South in seven phases -- each phase triggered by the construction of particular buildings. Upon completion, each segment of the park will be transferred to Parks & Recreation. The developers will pay for the park’s maintenance in perpetuity by an assessment on each apartment. With almost 11-acres of parkland created, Riverside Park South is more than one-third complete.
A Thomas Balsley Associates team, led by Mr. Balsley and Steven Tupu, designed the parkland of Phase 2 to complement the promenade and bikeway already in place along the river. The beautiful 3-acre waterfront park is characterized by meandering wooden walkways, a river overlook, and natural coastal marsh grasses.
Parks & Recreation Commissioner Adrian Benepe kicked off the event, thanking Donald Trump and the Riverside South Planning Corporation for their support of the project. "Opening up all of the City's waterfronts is one of Mayor Bloomberg's top priorities, and the completion of Phase 2 of Riverside Park South brings us one step closer to that goal," declared Commissioner Benepe. "When all 29 acres of Riverside Park South are complete," the Commissioner added, "the pristine greenway will connect Riverside and the Hudson River Park, creating a seamless transition between Manhattan's two great parks along the Hudson."
Donald Trump remarked, "Working with our partners – the Riverside South Planning Corporation and the City of New York – we have taken a former industrial wasteland and transformed it into an exciting waterfront parkland of unique and unprecedented beauty."
Other speakers included Commissioner of the Department of Environmental Protection Christopher O. Ward, Riverside South Planning Corporation Chair Philip K. Howard, and City Council Member Gale Brewer. All of the speakers expressed their excitement about the completion of the newest park addition and are looking forward to seeing the completion of the ultimate goal of 29 acres of "pristine greenway."
This new park will surely serve to connect Westsiders to the Hudson, as locals have already begun to incorporate the park into their lives, regularly walking their dogs, exercising, or just taking a breather from the bustle of the city by escaping to the serene atmosphere of the boardwalk. "Riverside Park South, once only a dream, has become a very real and integral part of this Westside Community – indeed, of the entire City," said Philip Howard with great pride.
The greatly anticipated crab race, clearly the most important event of the day, marked the end of the ribbon cutting. Commissioner Benepe's crab exhibited sub-par speed, while Donald Trump's crab took the lead. Despite defeat, Commissioner Benepe graciously exclaimed, "Donald Trump picks a winner again!"
Written by Jocelyn Aframe & Conor W. Cook
QUOTATION FOR THE DAY
"Nothing that I can do will change the structure of the universe."
But maybe, by raising my voice I can help the greatest of all causes – goodwill among men and peace on earth."