New Children’s Park Coming to Chelsea

Kids in this neighborhood will now have a much-needed place to play.

Residents in Manhattan’s Chelsea neighborhood are excited that a new park for kids will be built on 20th Street between Sixth and Seventh avenues, according to NY1.

“Friends of 20th Street Park” have been campaigning for the park for years. According to its website, the closest park for the 2,000 Chelsea kids is a half-mile away, while the area’s residential population grew ten-times the Manhattan average in recent years. Chelsea also ranks last on key open space metrics, which is one reason why this particular plot of land was so important to the group.

The 10,000 square-foot lot currently houses a vacant two-story Department of Sanitation building and a parking lot. The City had originally planned to use the site to build affordable housing, but after over half of the people who participated this year in Councilmember Corey Johnson’s participatory budgeting program voted to allocate funds for the small park, the proposal for it was passed, according to Chelsea Clinton News. In fact, the proposal was the top vote getter among 17 proposals.

“In the context of 17 other very worthy community projects, to have the one with such a huge turnout…clearly speaks to a very activated and engaged community around the idea of open green space in the area,” said Matthew Weiss, founder of Friends of 20th Street Park.

The project is estimated to cost nearly $6 million, with City Hall picking up the majority of the bill. “The need is there in terms of open space,” said Councilman Johnson, according to The New York Post.

The Parks Department will start hosting meetings in March about design ideas. “It’s amazing to think that this park could be here for hundreds of years and that people will come here and enjoy this park because of what everybody on this block and in this area came together to do,” said one local resident.

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