Central Park: Heckscher Playground Improvements – New York NY

City:
New York, New York City, NY

Site Type:
Art Works, Parks and Recreation, Playgrounds, Athletic Courts and Fields, Sculptures

New Deal Agencies:
Work Relief Programs, Works Progress Administration (WPA)

Started:
1935

Quality of Information:
Very Good

Site Survival:
Extant

Description

After the Works Progress Administration (WPA) was launched in April 1935 (renamed the Work Projects Administration in 1939), it quickly became the main source of relief funds and labor for the NYC Parks Department. Heckscher Playground in Central Park was one of many playgrounds in New York to be renovated or constructed with WPA funding and labor:

“Before the New Deal, Heckscher Playground was the only playground in all of Central Park, and prior to 1926 there were no playgrounds at all. In 1935 a plan was announced for the “complete renovation and redevelopment of the area”, to include a memorial to Sophie Loeb, a new wading pool, a renovated recreation building, and “swings, slides, see-saws, jungle gyms, horizontal bars and ladders for children, and croquet and horseshoe pitching courts, separated from the children’s area, have been included for adults.””   (www.kermitproject.org)

Source notes

The WPA Guide to New York City, p. 351. https://www.kermitproject.org/newdeal/centralpark/heckscher0.html https://kermitproject.org/newdeal/parksprojects.html#commentary

Site originally submitted by Frank da Cruz on July 23, 2015.

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