Archive for the tag 'adrian benepe'

Mayor Michael Bloomberg and U.S. Secretary of the Interior Ken Salazar signed a deal yesterday establishing a management agreement between the city and the National Parks Service for 10,000 acres of parkland in and around Jamaica Bay.

The deal, announced nine months after the intent was made public in October, establishes the framework for collaboration between the National Parks Service and the New York City Department of Parks and Recreation to promote access, establish research and education programs, and develop recreational opportunities in the park area, which includes Floyd Bennett Field and the marshlands and waterways around it.

(Video of the announcement is above. Note that this was originally a live stream, and the announcement does not begin until the 12:50 mark.)

The Jamaica Bay area is federal parkland, but jurisdictional lines have blurred for years as city and state infrastructure bleed into the park. Finger pointing between the patchwork of agencies and levels of government has long hampered improvements to the area, including squabbling over whose responsibility it is to make repairs to Plumb Beach – repairs that will soon be made after 10 years of community unrest as the sands washed away.

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Administrators of the Gateway National Recreation Area, Congressman Bob Turner and New York City Parks Department Commissioner Adrian Benepe joined together with nature enthusiasts and history buffs over the weekend, celebrating the grand reopening of the William Fitts Ryan Visitor Center at Floyd Bennett Field.

The event capped off a three-year effort that saw the building’s interior – once an unfriendly mess of paint chips, splintered wood and decrepit infrastructure – painstakingly restored to its 1930 appearance, including beautiful art deco furnishings and detail work on the interior.

Check out our photos of the stunning new center, as well as photos from Floyd Bennett’s Hangar B, home of the Historical Aircraft Restoration Project.