Former Landfill On Staten Island Converting To Park
08/22/2005 03:49 PM
The city on Monday announced a $6 million, 28-acre park to be built on Staten Island, the first step of a $100 million plan to turn the former Fresh Kills landfill into a park two-and-a-half times the size of Central Park.
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The new park, to be called Owl Hollow Fields at Fresh Kills, will include 10 acres of recreation space, with two synthetic and two natural turf soccer fields, along with fitness and nature trails.
Construction is expected to begin in the spring of 2006 and be completed by the fall of 2007.
NY1’s Amanda Farinacci filed this report.
If soccer is the country's fastest growing sport, and Staten Island's south shore is the city's fastest growing neighborhood, it should come as no surprise to hear there aren't enough places to play soccer there.
But soon an overgrown area next to the Fresh Kills Landfill will be transformed into a new soccer park to be called Owl Hollow Fields.
“We're very, very happy. This will really alleviate a lot of our issues and help us accommodate the kids,” says Sandy Rapaglia of the Staten Island Soccer League.
Owl Hollow Fields gets its name from a creek that used to run through the area. And while it's next to the old landfill, the city-owned land has never been used for dumping.
The Giuliani administration wanted to use it for a sanitation depot, but that idea was knocked down by the community, which wanted to turn the open space into soccer fields.
“There is such a compelling need for soccer fields here on Staten Island. We have over 5,000 soccer families here on the south shore, many of whom need to travel to New Jersey and elsewhere just to have their kids enjoy playing soccer,” says City Councilman Andrew Lanza.
Plans for the 28-acre park mark the beginning of the transformation of the Fresh Kills Landfill itself. The sweeping master plan calls for creating acres of open space, open water, wetlands, meadows and woodlands, while opening part of the site to local traffic to help reduce congestion.
When Fresh Kills Park is complete, it will be two and a half times the size of Central Park.
“It would have been inconceivable a decade ago, but the next generation of Staten Islanders will know Fresh Kills as one of our city's shining jewels - a beautiful, green emerald,” says Mayor Michael Bloomberg.
The new park will cost the city about $6 million, and it's expected to be complete in fall 2007.
- Amanda Farinacci