Parks Department Begins Resurfacing of Seward Park Basketball Courts
The pock-marked basketball court in the northeast corner of Seward Park is on the road to rehabilitation. Parks Department identified the public space as one of four Manhattan sites eligible for reconstruction and resurfacing via $2.2 million in funding from the city. (In fact, three are located on the Lower East Side.) Chain-link fencing has sealed the perimeter for the duration of the project.
This seemingly miniscule development is three years in the making, if you can believe it. Design and procurement took that long. Should be complete by summertime, though.
The new basketball court is just one of many changes around here. From the renovated bathouse to reopening the Essex Street entrance, the last couple years have been rather fortuitous for Seward Park, considered the oldest municipal park in the country. Its namesake conservancy continues to fight for funding and upgrades, resulting last year in a substantial cash prize from the Parks Without Borders program.
Those $6.4 million in funds are allocated to a new renovation project currently in the works. The main focus of the initiative – separate from the basketball court – will be access and connectivity of the park as a whole, including the creation of “Library Plaza” in front of the landmarked relic that will be a “gathering space.” (e.g. public-private Astor Place).
The other notable change in Seward Park is the joint art venture between the city and Uniqlo. Cheryl Wing-Zi Wong won the $10,000 grant to impart “Constellation” later this summer.