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  • Arbutus Woods Park Improvements - Staten Island NY
    "During the Great Depression, the federal government established the Works Progress Administration (WPA) to employ Americans in a series of public construction projects. Almost 19,000 New Yorkers labored on Staten Island. They built sidewalks through wooded areas that were supposed to eventually have roads laid through them. Many of these planned roads were never built, but the sidewalks remain in many of the island’s parks, including this one. Remnants of unfinished roadbeds for Eyelandt and Collins Avenues run through or near the park as well."
  • Arkport Central School - Arkport NY
    The Arkport Central School in Arkport NY is a K-12 public school that is still in use. The Public Works Administration made two grants, of $63,000 and $9,654, against a planned cost of approximately $192,000.
  • Arkport Dam and Reservoir - Arkport NY
    Built 1938-39 under the Flood Control Act of 1936, following catastrophic local floods in 1935, and still in use. Federal cost was $1,910,000. C.C.C. built a camp nearby for the construction workers,
  • Arlington "Ollie" Edinboro Playground - New York NY
    St. Nicholas Park is a long stretch of park between Harlem and Manhattanville, reaching from 127th St. to 141st St. The park contains two playgrounds. The larger one at 129th St., known as St. Nicholas Playground, opened before the New Deal in 1931. A July 1934 Department of Parks press release announced the opening of a second playground at the opposite end of the park near 141st St.. When it opened, the 200 ft. by 60 ft. playground contained an "open pavilion, a comfort station and a wading pool which can be converted into a basketball court, and slides, jungle...
  • Arthur Avenue Retail Market - Bronx NY
    The historic Arthur Avenue Retail Market, located in the heart of the Bronx's Little Italy, was constructed with the assistance of the federal Work Projects Administration (WPA). The market, one of eight similar projects in the city, opened October 29, 1940.
  • Arthur W. Cunningham Junior High School - Brooklyn NY
    The Brooklyn school J.H.S. 234, presently Arthur W. Cunningham Junior High School, was constructed with the assistance of federal Public Works Administration (PWA) funds.
  • Asser Levy Recreation Center Pools - New York NY
    On May 31, 1938, the Department of Parks announced "that plans were being prepared for the renovation of nine public bath houses transferred to them from the jurisdiction of the Borough President of Manhattan." The improvements were to be done "with relief labor under the supervision of the Works Progress Administration and inspected by the Department of Parks." At what is now the Asser Levy Recreation Center, the renovations included the construction of two new swimming pools: "At 23rd Street and Avenue A where there is adequate vacant city-owned land available, a new outdoor swimming pool, 125 ft. long x 50 ft....
  • Astor Avenue Improvements - Bronx NY
    The federal Work Projects Administration put many men to work starting in 1935 with a Bronx street repair and maintenance project along roads throughout the borough. The streets, many of which in New York City were still unpaved, were surfaced with penetrated macadam. Roads improved included the 1.1-mile stretch of Astor Avenue between Wallace Ave. and Eastchester Rd.
  • Astoria Health Center - Astoria NY
    The city Health Center, meant to serve Long Island City and Astoria, at the southwest corner of 31st Ave. and 14th St., was built by the Works Progress Administration (WPA). "This center and eight others are being built as WPA projects," The New York Times reported in 1936.
  • Astoria Health Playground - Astoria NY
    On July 2, 1938, the Department of Parks announced the opening of a playground on the site of what is now the Astoria Health Playground: "In Queens, at 14th Street south of 31st Avenue adjacent to the Astoria Health Center, the new playground is equipped with swings, see-saws, play houses, slide, sand pit and a portable shower. A brick comfort station with facilities for boys and girls, and permanent concrete benches are also provided. The perimeter of the entire playground is landscaped with shade trees. …The work was performed by the Works Progress Administration, but planned and inspected by the Department of...
  • Astoria Heights Playground - Astoria NY
    The Astoria Heights Playground, covering most of the block between 30th Rd., 31st Ave., 45th St. and 46th St., was developed by the Parks Department and the WPA in two stages between 1937 and 1938. In September 1937, a playground for small children was opened, "as well as handball courts for older children and benches for mothers and guardians." Just over two years later, the Parks Department announced the completion of the rest of the playground: "he new 2.3 acre area supplements and includes the small recreational area opened in 1937, and rounds out the entire block, the southerly end of which...
  • Astoria Park - Astoria NY
    The 56-acre park dates from the early 20th century, but "major improvements in Astoria Park were undertaken by Parks Commissioner Robert Moses and the Works Progress Administration during a hot summer in 1936. The stunning pool complex opened on July 4 of that year and hosted the swimming and diving trials for the U.S. Olympic Teams in 1936 and 1964" (NYC Parks). "Besides the swimming pool, various playgrounds and comfort stations were added or renovated during the course of the New Deal using relief labor" (kermitproject.org). This included "an adult play area with handball, basketball, horseshoe and shuffleboard courts, horizontal...
  • Astoria Park Pool - Astoria NY
    Astoria Park  pool opened on July 2, 1936. It was the largest of the eleven WPA pools built throughout the city that year. It was the site of the Olympic swimming and diving trials for the 1936 Olympics, just as Randall's Island Stadium was for track and field. "Parks Commissioner Robert Moses, an avid swimmer himself, recognized the importance of aquatic recreation and launched a campaign to open eleven new pools throughout the city during the summer of 1936. The labor and construction came from the Works Progress Administration (WPA), whose administrator Harry Hopkins described the pool in Queens as, 'The finest in the world.'...
  • Athletic Field - Westport NY
    The federal Works Progress Administration (WPA) developed an athletic field in Westport, New York. The exact location of the park within the town is unknown to Living New Deal.
  • Auburn Correctional Facility Construction - Auburn NY
    Then known as Auburn State Prison, the Auburn Correctional Facility received a sizable expansion as a result of a $226,000 federal Public Works Administration grant during the 1930s. PWA Federal Docket No. 3248 (NY). Specific construction included "accommodations for inmates, incinerator, connecting corridors and guard house."
  • Audubon Station Post Office - New York NY
    The historic Audubon Station post office in New York, New York is located on West 165th Street, between Audubon Ave. and Amsterdam Ave. It was one of many post offices in Manhattan constructed with federal Treasury Department funds during the New Deal era. The post office was initially known as New York, New York's Station 'M' until its redesignation as Audubon Station on April 1, 1947. The building's cornerstone dates an initial stage of construction to 1935. The building is still in service.
  • Augur Lake Road Improvements - Keeseville NY
    33 men of the federal Works Progress Administration (WPA) worked to grade, surface, and otherwise improve one mile of Augur Lake Road outside of Keeseville, New York in 1939.
  • Austin J. McDonald Playground - Staten Island NY
    From NYC Parks: "In 1918, the War Memorial Fund was established to create a $1 million Memorial Arch to commemorate those killed in World War I. The organizers were forced to adjust their plans when they were only able to raise $210,000. By 1922 the project was scrapped and the money turned over to the City. Through time, the unspent fund earned interest, growing to nearly $340,000 by 1934. Commissioner Robert Moses (1888–1981), seeking additional open spaces for children, convinced the remaining members of the War Memorial Committee to allow the funds to be used for playgrounds... The War Memorial Fund was...
  • Automotive High School - Brooklyn NY
    Automotive High School in the Greenpoint section of Brooklyn, facing McCarren Park, was built during the 1930s with funds from the federal Public Works Administration (PWA).  The school was created to train students to be skilled auto repair technicians, to which have been added offerings in Software Engineering and Art and Media. The building has a striking inscription over the main entrance: "Manhood Service Labor Citizenship". Not surprisingly, it has few female students.  The exterior and interior appear to be little changed over the years.    
  • Avenue S Improvements - Brooklyn NY
    The federal Works Progress Administration (WPA) undertook several road improvement projects along roads in Brooklyn, New York. One such project involved the removal of malls and other repair work along the modest stretch of Avenue S from Avenue T to E 54th St.
  • Avenue U Improvements - Brooklyn NY
    The federal Work Projects Administration put many men to work starting in 1935 with a $197,000 street repair and maintenance project, along what were then dirt roads, throughout the borough of Brooklyn, New York. Roads improved included the 0.9-mile stretch of Avenue U from Flatbush Ave. to Gerritsen Ave.
  • Avenue V Pumping Station Improvements - Brooklyn NY
    The federal Works Progress Administration (WPA) undertook a sizable public building improvement project in Brooklyn, New York beginning in 1935.  The project involved the "Improvement of Public Buildings and Offices" at more than 30 locations, including the water pumping station at 84 Avenue V, which is still in use today.
  • Aviation Mechanics Training School (former) Improvements - Plattsburgh NY
    The federal Work Projects Administration (WPA) conducted improvements ca. 1940-1 at what was then the Aviation Mechanics Training School in Plattsburgh. The exact location and status of this facility is unknown to Living New Deal.
  • Avoca Central School - Avoca NY
    The Public Works Administration provided a $99,000 grant to construct a new K-12 public school in 1937-1939. Much expanded and renovated, the school remains in use today.
  • Bachmann Railway Station Demolition - Staten Island NY
    The Bachmann railway station was demolished during the mid-1930s as part of a massive grade separation project along what was then the South Beach Branch of the Staten Island Railway. The Bachmann Station "was located east of Tompkins Avenue, between Lynhurst and Chestnut Avenues." The Public Works Administration (PWA) provided a $1.46 million grant for the $6 million grade crossing elimination project, which included work elsewhere in Staten Island and even in Manhattan. PWA Docket No. NY 4926.
  • Bailey Playground - Bronx NY
    The New York Times reported in 1941 that WPA labor was to develop a playground at Bailey Avenue and West 234th Street in the Bronx. Bailey Playground now resides on that site: "WPA crews are busy on twelve other parks and playground projects in other parts of Manhattan, Brooklyn, Queens, and the Bronx ...  A plot originally acquired for school purposes in 1929 will become the site of a playground at Bailey Avenue and West 234th Street, the Bronx.  A large wading pool is included in the plans." In August 1943, at the end of the New Deal, the Parks Department announced the opening of this...
  • Baird Road - Penfield NY
    The Works Progress Administration (WPA) photo pictured here shows Baird Road when it was completed for the town of Penfield in Monroe County, New York.
  • Baisley Pond Park Improvements - Jamaica NY
    New York City's Parks Department website states: "During the Great Depression of the 1930s, Commissioner Robert Moses (1888-1981) and the Works Progress Administration constructed recreational facilities in the park, including a boat landing, several playgrounds, tennis and handball courts, baseball diamonds, and a football field."
  • Banneker Playground - Brooklyn NY
    "Banneker Playground is named in honor of Benjamin Banneker (1731-1806), a noted African-American writer and mathematician... This playground is located on Marcy Avenue between Kosciusko Street and Lafayette Avenue. The site was formerly owned by the Board of Transportation, which held it as part of its property for the G subway line. After 1937, the city maintained a park on the site under a permit from the Board of Transportation. The park was originally built by the WPA (Works Progress Administration), a federal program that built 850 airports, 120,000 bridges, and 125,000 public buildings, in addition to its 8,000 parks nationwide." The...
  • Baruch Playground - New York NY
    This park is located on the site of a former tenement and adjacent to what was the first free public bathhouse when it opened in 1901. This and other early bathhouses were built for the sake of public sanitation after Dr. Simon Baruch lobbied hard for new health laws. In 1939, Dr. Baruch's son donated the land for this park to the city at a time when it was still surrounded by tenements, and in order to provide both a local playground and to improve the bathhouse structure itself. The Department of Parks press release from the park's opening on May...
  • Baseball Diamond and Grandstand - Greene NY
    In 1936 the federal Works Progress Administration (WPA) built a baseball diamond and a covered grandstand for the Greene Town Team in a park that is still referred to today as Ball Flats. Ball flats is a public recreation area "located next to the Chenango River within the Village of Greene...." (Greene Parks & Recreation). An article by the town historian notes that "In the 1930s there were so many strong left-handed batters (Harry Blakeslee, Bill Henninge, Charlie Gillette, Slim Barrows, Sanky Gibson among them) hitting the balls up to North Chenango Street, that they changed the layout of the field to what it...
  • Bath Beach Park - Brooklyn NY
    Bath Beach Park, named for the surrounding neighborhood, was acquired by the City in 1937. In 1941-1942, the WPA completed extensive work on the park. A press release announcing the opening explained: "Located on a knoll on the center line of 17 Avenue extended is a semi-circular overlook sitting area commanding an unobstructed view over Gravesend Bay and the Lower New York Bay. A concrete ramp skirts the brick surfaced retaining wall which supports the overlook and connects with a 30 foot wide tree and bench lined mall... The smaller western section which is subdivided into six use areas by fencing, benches...
  • Bath V.A. Hospital - Bath NY
    The Public Works Administration funded the construction of the Bath V.A. Hospital in Bath NY. Created as the hospital for Bath V.A., replacing the 1870s facility at what had been the New York State Soldiers' and Sailors' Home. The oldest resident Civil War veteran broke the ground in 1936. The hospital was dedicated May 12, 1938 with 409 beds and two operating rooms. This is still the hospital for what is now the Bath VA Medical Center.
  • Bath V.A. Medical Center: Entrance Bridge - Bath NY
    A new entrance bridge to Bath V.A. Medical Center over the Conhocton (or Cohocton) Rover was built in 1939, replacing an older one which had been posted as unsafe five years earlier. A lengthy detour was required to leave or enter the grounds. This 1939 bridge is still in use as of 2023. However, the New Deal agency responsible for the construction is currently unknown to Living New Deal.
  • Battery Landing Platform - New York NY
    In the 1937 the Works Progress Administration undertook construction on the Battery Landing Platform which was used as a landing pier for excursion boats (WPA).
  • Battery Maritime Building Remodeling - New York NY
    The WPA allocated $612,800 in 1935 toward the renovation of the "pier building foot of Whitehall & South Sts." The building in question is most likely what was then known as the Municipal Ferry Pier (built 1906-1909), now known as the Battery Maritime Building. WPA Official Project No. 65-97-427.
  • Battle Island State Park Golf Course Improvements - Fulton NY
    The federal Works Progress Administration (WPA) worked to improve the public golf course at Battle Island State Park.
  • Bayard Rustin Educational Complex Murals - New York NY
    This building was originally the Textile High School, then the Straubenmuller Textile High School, then the Charles Evans Hughes High School, before eventually assuming its current title as the Bayard Rustin Educational Complex. It is now an NYC "vertical campus" housing several smaller schools. In addition to a pair of stained glass windows by Gerard Recke, the building contains several large WPA Federal Arts Project murals created by various New Deal artists in 1934-36. In a 1965 oral history, New Deal artist Irving Block said of the high school that "there were many rooms available to us for decoration." In the same...
  • Bayless Avenue Culverts - Binghamton NY
    The caption to the Works Progress Administration photo above notes that this is "one of 2 culverts built by WPA in the city. This project is known as Bayless Ave. Culverts and employed 37 men" (WPA) More information is needed about the present status and exact location of the project.  
  • Bayley Seton Hospital - Staten Island NY
    Originally the United States Marine Hospital, what is now Richmond University Medical Center's Bayley Seton Hospital was a PWA project. It is described by the Federal Writers' Project: "United States Marine Hospital, Bay Street and Vanderbilt Avenue, a Federal hospital operated by the United States Public Health Service, is open to personnel of the Merchant Marine and Coast Guard, and to certain classes of Government employees. Constructed in 1933-6 by the PWA at a cost of two million dollars, the tawny-colored brick buildings with a silver tower cover an area of eighteen acres. Louis A. Simon was the supervising architect. This...
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