New York Central Park
New York City’s Central Park may be the most popular public park in the entire world. It is located in the middle of the Manhattan borough in New York, and receives upwards of 25 million visitors each and every year. The locations relevance in pop culture is still felt, as the location has been seen in many different movies including, famously, “Home Alone.”
Central Park first opened its figurative doors to the public in 1857. The space was built on over 770 acres of land that was owned by the city at the time. Shortly after the park first opened, a plan to renovate the park was created and the park was officially completed in 1873.
The location is a designated National Historic Landmark, as of 1963. The park stretches between 59th Street and 110th Street, and is approximately half a mile wide throughout. Central Park is a must-see tourist attraction for most individuals that visit New York. One of the more popular attractions within the confines of the park, is the “Angel of the Waters,” a fountain that was erected in the park in 1873.
Starting in the 1960’s, the Park has played host to a number of well-known events. The Public Theater holds an annual “Shakespeare in the Park” festival, in which a number of different theatrical groups will perform plays written by Shakespeare in front of crowds in the Delacorte Theater, which was built in 1961.
Throughout the 1970’s, amid political turmoil in the United States, the park became a venue for huge events that included protests, political rallies and gigantic concerts. During that period of time, crime within New York City was high and many of the city’s residents were leaving for the suburbs. Central Park reigned as a meeting ground for individuals of all beliefs, and helped to inflate the low morale of New York residents. These events also helped the Parks Department to create funds. Throughout the 1970’s the Parks Department experienced severe budget cuts, and were looking for ways to get anyone in the park to create additional revenue that would allow them to take care of Central Park properly.
The number of people who were in the park caused a great deal of decay, and poor management contributed to the situation. In the early 1980’s, efforts were started to restore the park. This included planting numerous types of trees, and the promise to citizens that graffiti wouldn’t last more than 24 hours on any wall in the park. This policy has been upheld through today, even though graffiti is not the problem that it once was within the park. Along with the renovation came a restructuring of park management to ensure that the problems of the past would not persist.
Central Park is the most well-known and visited park in the United States. It is home to many different activities including birding, boating, and different sporting events. Central Park is engrained in the fabric of New York City, and has become a relevant part of American culture since it was first constructed and opened in 1857.