New park on Newtown Creek attracts volunteers under Kosciuszko Bridge
Gardeners came out to "Under The K Bridge Park"
GREENPOINT — Even in a season when the weather can threaten to turn nasty, the North Brooklyn Parks Alliance (NBK Parks) has no trouble getting volunteers to plant more greenery in the park Under the Kosciuszko Bridge (Under the K Bridge Park). Recently, as indicated by the photos here, many turned out to plant something called “fuzzy beans” — a purple flower vine in the legume family.
The next volunteer opportunity will involve nurturing the all-important trees with pruning and pest management and will occur on Friday, Feb. 24 (3:30–5:00 p.m.) and Saturday, Feb. 25 (12:00–2:00 p.m.).
As tens of thousands of commuters drive daily overhead on the BQE and the Kosciuszko Bridge, few of them are aware of this special park on the banks of the Newtown Creek. In the planning stages for several years as the new bridge was being built, the park was opened to the public just two and a half years ago.
In September 2020, North Brooklyn Parks Alliance, in partnership with New York State Department of Transportation, proudly announced the opening of a new seven-acre park in Greenpoint. Called “Under the K Bridge Park,” the new space converted a formerly abandoned site into a vibrant seven-acre open area that invites the public to a little-known waterfront of Newtown Creek. Designed by Toronto-based landscape architecture firm, PUBLIC WORK, the space features expansive multi-purpose sections for recreation and culture, as well as woodland areas where more than 20,000 trees and native plant species now grow, including ferns, birches, maples, dogwoods and evergreens. Elevated lawns and a granite stairway provide optimal viewing points for the Manhattan skyline.
Unprecedented demand for open spaces was then exacerbated by the COVID-19 pandemic. It made clear that parks are essential to the physical and mental health of our communities. Under the soaring Kosciuszko Bridge columns, reaching as high as 100 feet, the new park distinguishes itself with massive industrial rooms that offer opportunity for creative expression, including large-scale public art projects that incorporate light, sound and sculptural works.
Connecting Brooklyn and Queens, the new Kosciuszko Bridge is the first bridge built in New York City since the Verrazzano-Narrows Bridge opened in 1964.
“As our neighborhoods become increasingly dense amid historic development, we all must reimagine the types of spaces that can become open and public,” said Katie Denny Horowitz, Executive Director, North Brooklyn Parks Alliance. “Under the K is a visionary solution to the urban plight of limited space, transforming how cities can and should approach future parks.”
“We founded the North Brooklyn Parks Alliance (formerly OSA) more than 15 years ago for the purpose of expanding and maintaining parks in North Brooklyn,” said Joseph Vance, AIA, NBPA Board Member. “We are absolutely thrilled at the possibility this partnership with New York State Department of Transportation provides to create nearly seven acres of exciting multi-use open space for our neighborhood.”
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