Seton Falls Park

The Daily Plant : Thursday, June 26, 2008

Restoration Completed at Seton Falls Park

Urban Park Rangers walking in Seton Falls Park
Photo by Daniel Avila

Seton Falls Park is often called the “Grand Canyon” of the Bronx. Now, thanks to $905,000 in DEP Croton Mitigation Funds, it is even more beautiful, and useful.

On June 20, Commissioner Benepe joined Assembly Member Carl E. Heastie; Community Board 12 District Manager Carmen Rosa; Florence Payne, representative to Congress Member Engel; Myseha Taylor-Myke, representative to Borough President Carrion; Cleveland Beckett, representative to Council Member Seabrook; and students from J.H.S 142 to cut the ribbon on these renovations. The ceremony featured musical entertainment from the J.H.S. 142 / John Philip Sousa School Band.

The park, which is bounded by East 233rd Street, Seton Avenue, Pratt Avenue, and Eden Terrace in the Bronx, features a reconstructed path and nature trail system which provides safe and recreational access to the surrounding residential community.

This renovation project was financed by $905,000 in funds allocated by the DEP Croton Filtration Plant Mitigation Fund through the Clean Water Bond Act. The reconstruction includes new pavement, trailhead markers and signage, guardrails, bollards, benches, bicycle racks, drainage and water supply structures, planting beds and erosion control elements.

Vehicular access roads have also been constructed in key spots throughout the park, which will allow Parks Enforcement Patrol access to all pedestrian paths and trails for maintenance and security purposes. The new path and trail improvements feature erosion control to prevent flooding in low spots throughout the park. Other enhancements include environmentally friendly trails, such as boardwalks, in and around the wetland area. The path reconstruction project has also expanded access to the rustic timber staircases that were built back in the early 1980’s.

The park derives its name from the prominent waterfalls built in the park by the Seton family. James Roosevelt, a relative of two U.S. Presidents, was the first owner after the Revolutionary War. Nathaniel Prime, a wealthy New York banker, later acquired the area and called his estate "The Cedars" for the many red cedars on his land. By the early 1900’s the site was used for recreation although it was not yet an official park.

On June 10, 1914, the City acquired 32 acres of the former Seton estate for the Department of Health to build a hospital for contagious diseases. Twenty-nine acres of this parcel were assigned to Parks on June 11, 1930, following 15 years of community resistance to the hospital plan. The remaining three acres were annexed in 1932. Additional lands were assigned to Parks in 1983 and 1985.


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Directions to Seton Falls Park

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