Watson Gleason Playground – Bronx NY

Project type: Parks and Recreation
Quality of Information:
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The 3.3-acre Watson Gleason Playground, located in the Soundview neighborhood of the Bronx, was constructed with WPA labor. New York City’s Parks Department writes:

“In 1938 the City of New York acquired the entire block bounded by Watson, Noble, Gleason, and Rosedale Avenues. Designed by the Parks Department and built with labor provided by the Work Projects Administration (WPA), the playground opened one-and-one-half years later. Parks Commissioner Robert Moses presided at the dedication ceremony, which featured Mayor Fiorello LaGuardia, Borough President James J. Lyons, Acting WPA Administrator Major Edmond H. Leary, and President Roderick Stephens of the Bronx Borough of Trade.

The large site contained a children’s playground, comfort station, roller-skating area, softball diamonds, and courts for volleyball, basketball, handball, and shuffleboard.”

In 1999 the playground was renovated and now “features new swings, play equipment, game tables, and benches” and more.

Source notes

Watson Gleason Playground History, NYC Parks Department website.
NYC Parks Dept press release of December 4, 1939.
New Deal Assistance in NYC Parks Department Projects, 1934-43.

Additional project information contributed by Frank da Cruz.

Project originally submitted by Evan Kalish on March 3, 2014.

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


Location Info

Noble Ave.
Bronx, NY 10472

Coordinates: 40.828461, -73.868930

One comment on “Watson Gleason Playground – Bronx NY

  1. Ann Gorman

    My mom (Fay Anthony) grew up across the street from this park. She was at the opening ceremony and often talked about how exciting it was to have Mayor Laguardia and Robert Moses in her neighborhood. She fondly remembered ice skating in the winter, when the parks department would freeze the wading pool. Her mother would provide hot chocolate for the neighborhood children. Years later, I took her revisit her childhood home and she was delighted that her park was still well maintained and continues to provide recreation to the residents of her old neighborhood.

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