Berry Playground – Brooklyn NY


Berry Playground is a pocket park tucked along a side street in Brooklyn, which was constructed in 1937 by the city Parks Department with the help of the New Deal, most likely Works Progress Administration (WPA) labor.

The site had recently been acquired “…for $18,000 from the Brooklyn Eye and Ear Hospital in 1936. It immediately came under the jurisdiction of Parks…” (NYC Parks)

A new playground opened on the site on November 13, 1937, as explained in the Parks Department Press Release at the time:

“…the new playground is for small children and has swings, see-saws, slides, playhouses, sand tables, a play area and a rectangular wading pool, which can be used as a volley ball court in spring and fall. The entire plot is encircled by a landscaped area with shade trees. Permanent concrete benches have also been installed. These areas are two more of the sites selected by the Commissioner of Parks, and acquired by condemnation after authorization by the Board of Estimate and Apportionment in 1936, to take care of the recreational needs of neglected neighborhoods. They will make a total of 246, which have been added to the Park Department’s recreational system since the beginning of the present administration.”

Neither parks department source mentions which New Deal relief agencies were involved but, as researcher Frank da Cruz explains here, almost all New York City Parks Department projects between 1934 and 1943 were carried out with New Deal funds and/or labor, and that after April 1935, the WPA quickly became the main source of this support.

The playground was renovated in 2000.

Source notes

NYC Parks - Berry Playground

Department of Parks, Press Release, November 13, 1937

New York City Parks Department New Deal Projects 1934-43

Project originally submitted by Frank da Cruz on November 2, 2016.

We welcome contributions of additional information on any New Deal project site.


Location Info

S 3rd St. and Berry St.
Brooklyn, NY 11211

Coordinates: 40.712598, -73.963489

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