June 30, 2016
NYC Parks Commissioner Mitchell J. Silver, FAICP, yesterday joined City Council Member Corey Johnson, State Senator Brad Hoylman, Community Board 4-Manhattan Chair Delores Rubin, West 47th/48th Streets Block Association President Elke Fears and neighborhood children to cut the ribbon on Ramone Aponte Park which has received a full reconstruction which included greening up the space and making it more accessible of all ages.
This project has transformed Ramon Aponte Park; opening up the space while adding a spray shower in its sunniest location, a new play unit and house, swings and passive seating. In addition to adding more safety surface for younger visitors, the design also addressed drainage issues by installing a sustainable rain garden. The reconstruction on Ramon Aponte Park was funded by former City Council Speaker Christine Quinn with $1.3M.
“Parks like this one are neighborhood gems that communities embrace as their backyards, benefiting their physical and mental health,” said Commissioner Silver. “Ramon Aponte Park exists in Hell’s Kitchen due to the passion and commitment of its namesake; it’s that same type of passion that resulted in former City Council Member Christine Quinn’s funding support to fully renovate this park, for which we are truly grateful. The redesign and added amenities will be enjoyed for years to come.”
“This is an exciting day for Hell’s Kitchen families,” said Council Member Corey Johnson. “Here on the West Side, we need to maximize all of the open space we have. That’s exactly what NYC Parks has done with Ramon Aponte Park, and I’m thrilled with the results. With state-of-the-art play equipment, new plantings and great amenities, our City is stepping up and supporting families of Hell’s Kitchen, who do so much for their kids and their community. I want to thank the Parks for their extraordinary work on this space, as well as my predecessor Christine Quinn, who put the funding in place to make this great project a reality.”
First constructed as a city park in 1990 by then Manhattan Borough President, former Mayor David Dinkins, Ramon Aponte is one of few parks named for a living person-then president of the block association.