Rancho Cienega Playground – Los Angeles CA

A 1938 report from the Los Angeles Department of Playground and Recreation describes the WPA’s role in creating the Rancho Cienega recreation area: “Forerunner of the great regional recreation centers of the future, the Rancho Cienega Playground was the outstanding… read more

Randall’s Island Park – New York NY

Randall’s Island Park cover more than 400 acres of the 500+ acre island.  It contains dozens of tennis courts, baseball diamonds, soccer fields, playgrounds and other recreational facilities, as well as paths, greenways and a marsh.  Frank da Cruz summarizes the extensive… read more

Riverside Park Reconstruction – New York NY

Riverside Park is a 6.7-mile long waterside public park in Manhattan’s Upper West Side, running between the Hudson River and Riverside Drive. Its origins go back to Frederick Law Olmsted and Calvert Vaux,  the designers of Central Park in the… read more

Riverside Park: Playgrounds – New York NY

Researcher Frank da Cruz explains that: “By 1934, the park was in terrible shape; Robert Moses and the NY City Parks Department, using New Deal funding, designers, and labor completely leveled the original park and replaced it with a new… read more

Sarsfield Playground – Brooklyn NY

On July 9, 1941, the Department of Parks announced the completion of what is now the Eugene Sarsfield Playground in Brooklyn. The press release announcing the park’s opening reported: “To provide a flat play surface it was necessary to construct… read more

Seward Park – New York NY

When the recreation area in Seward Park first opened in 1903, it was “the first permanent, municipally built playground in the United States” (NYC Parks). The park was significantly redeveloped during the New Deal. In April 1935, relief workers completed… read more

Sherwood Playground Improvements – Washington DC

The Federal Emergency Relief Administration (FERA) and the Works Progress Administration (WPA) funded improvements at the Sherwood Playground in Washington DC. The work consisted of the following improvements: FERA, 1934-1935, “Wrecked two houses; remodeled garage into shelter house (50 percent… read more

Silver Falls State Park: Silver Creek Youth Camp (former Silver Creek Recreation Development Area) – Silverton OR

Bear Creek Cottage Unit at Silver Creek Youth Camp, Silverton OR

The early development of Silver Falls State Park can be credited to several of the New Deal programs. A significant portion of the land for the park was purchased by the federal Resettlement Administration (RA) c. 1935, and developed for… read more