Tomorrow, Thursday, December 15, at 10:30 a.m., Councilman David G. Greenfield will host a reopening of a new and improved Seth Low Park. The Park has been closed since spring, when the second phase of a multi-million dollar city-funded facelift of the park began.
In addition to Councilman Greenfield, NYC Parks Commissioner Mitchell Silver, Assemblyman William Colton, Community Board 11 Chair William R. Guarinello, and Community Board 11 District Manager Marnee Elias-Pavia will be in attendance, as well as the United Chinese Association and Success Academy Bensonhurst.
Among new improvements that have been made during the past year’s closure are the addition of a new basketball court and a new handball court, new walking paths throughout the park, new benches, and fresh landscaping. While locals will remember that Seth Low has long had both basketball and handball courts, the old infrastructure had become so severely deteriorated they were rebuilt from scratch.
The money comes partially from Greenfield ($1.1 million), partially from the Borough President ($1.14 million) and partially from Mayor de Blasio’s administration ($223,000).
“This is only the beginning,” Greenfield said of these most recent improvements. Indeed, this reopening marks a halfway point for the park’s recreation: only $2.5 million of the planned $4.5 million worth of renovations have now been completed.
A third phase of the project was temporarily shelved early this year in anticipation of a rebid. That portion would include the construction of two synthetic turf fields — one striped for soccer and one unmarked field for other activities — to cost a combined $1.9 million and be completed by fall 2017.
The last time Seth Low was reconstructed was back in 1995. Clearly, this renovation was long overdue.
Fun fact, before it came into the city’s hands and became park, the land that is Seth Low was previously a dumping ground for a nearby trash incinerator and, before that, a bucolic space of the like we modern-day New Yorkers can only imagine.