Visit the Financial District's Parks in New York City
[ NEW YORK, NY - NYC - 10/15/2009 - www.Littleviews.com ]
>> The parks in New York's Financial District are as stunning as Central Park, but few tourists know about them. This is a major loss when it comes to sightseeing, relaxing, and having fun with children when visiting the big city.
Overview of the Financial District Park System
The main topic of this article takes place near callouts (1) - the corner of the Chambers and Church Street subway station, (2) - the Washington Market Park and the Chambers Street bridge over West Street, and (3) - Governor Nelson A. Rockefeller Park.
To reach the far northern end of the Governor Nelson A. Rockefeller Park, begin on Chambers Street and West Broadway (1) at the subway station (lines 1, 2, 3, and 9). Walk west past The Washington Market Park (2), which features a huge playground, and continue walking west to a smartly styled, elevator-accessible bridge that crosses over busy West Street. Linger on this bridge to watch traffic and take in the city's sights!
Continue walking west to the park's entrance at Chambers and River Terrace (3). There, you'll begin to see sweeping views of The Hudson and New Jersey shoreline, as well as the expanse of park itself. Take the architecturally interesting staircase, or accessible-friendly ramp, down to the flower-lined park itself.
Entering The Real World by Tom Otterness
Once in the park, you'll see The Real World entrance, which contains dozens of Tom Otterness' rounded, brass sculptures.
The Real World, a snarky (sarcastic/humorous) depiction of the financial industry, was installed prior to 9/11/01 when the World Trade Center was bombed. Given real world meanings, you'll have fun interpreting what you see. As for the sculpture above, kids usually stand on its foot pedestals. (Adults may rightly assume that these children are standing on the back of "a common man." What the heck - you can do it, too!)
There are numerous cement picnic tables in this area, all decorated with sculptures, with no two tables alike. During weekday afternoons, you'll often see nanny's sitting together as their charges play in the area.
The area's main sculpture, which sits in the middle of a moat that kids use as a splash pool, is very intricate. Children and young teens climb all over this sculpture, making it common to see several perched on its various edges.
The theme of The Real World is people chasing money and you'll see footprints and coins wherever you look. They appear on dry land and in the moat itself.
Above is a very small sculpture of a creature pushing a wheelbarrow full of coins. You'll see similar money-related themes in Otterness' Time + Money installation at the 42nd Street Hilton Hotel, between 8th and 7th Avenues, on both entrance doors and throughout its hallway.
Nothing is left unadorned. Even the cement walls that ring the area feature embedded sculptures, every one of which kids play with, while adults ponder meanings and snap photos.
Links and Additional Information
Online information about the complete park district is scarce. Googling "Battery Park New York," of course, turns up a lot of specific detail, while doing the same with "Governor Nelson A. Rockefeller Park" is weak. Many references are connected to Google maps, which, of course, don't describe a thing.
Upcoming Articles in this Littleviews' Series
Hopefully, this article and the ones planned for the future, will help you decide where to go and what to see. If you are traveling with children, you'll find the area's playgrounds exceptional!
Article and photos by Karen Little. First published on 10/15/2009. All rights reserved by www.Littleviews.com.