Parks Commissioner Adrian Benepe joined President of the Lower Manhattan Development Corporation David Emil and Community Board 1 Chair Julie Menin to reopen the reconstructed Pearl Street Playground in Lower Manhattan.
“Pearl Street Playground has become another great destination along the Fulton Street corridor,” said Commissioner Benepe. “Thanks to a $2.1 million allocation by the Lower Manhattan Development Corporation, Parks was able to reconstruct the playground to create an improved public space, complete with new playground equipment and spray showers, for lower Manhattan kids who want to cool off, get out, and stay active.”
The project reconstructed the playground and expanded it into the roadbed of “Little Pearl” Street and includes new play equipment for kids and tots, a state-of-the-art safety surface that reflects the sun and absorbs heat, spray shower, benches, fencing, new pavement, and native plantings. The playground was designed in compliance with accessibility design standards. This enlarged park also has a pedestrian link to Beekman Street, several additional seating areas, a rock feature referencing the sandy bluff that once existed at this site, and direct views to the South Street Seaport district.
This is the fourth park renovation that has been completed along the Fulton Street corridor in the last two years, including DeLury Square Park, Titanic Park, and Imagination Playground which was also built nearby next to the South Street Seaport.
Pearl Street Playground has a rich history. It was originally half of the block bounded by Pearl, Water, Fulton, and Beekman Streets. The block was split in half in the 1970’s when Pearl Street was connected to Water Street. The park’s earliest history was at the base of the sandy bluff that led down to the tidal estuary of the original tidal zone of New York. Various residential, commercial and industrial buildings occupied the site before they were demolished for the street widening and cut through.