CaVaLa Park Could be Renamed in Honor of Albert Capsouto, Community Board 1 Member
By Josh Williams
LOWER MANHATTAN — Community Board 1 is looking for a way to honor Albert Capsouto, a beloved neighborhood leader who died earlier this year.
Four options are on the table, with the front runner being renaming the recently completed CaVaLa Park in his honor. Capsouto had served on Community Board 1 for nearly 20 years and, with his brothers, opened a French bistro called Capsouto Freres in the neighborhood shortly after 9/11.
He died in January of complications from a brain tumor. He was 53.
Capsouto was always seen riding his bicycle through the neighborhood, locals said at a board meeting Monday night where a fitting memorial was under consideration.
“I think he would truly love the renaming of the park, and it would be wonderful if we could incorporate Albert’s bicycle,” said an emotional Jacque Capsouto, Albert’s brother.
CaVaLa Park was completed last year at the intersection of Canal, Varick and Laight streets. Along with the naming, the board and Capsouto's family are also considering whether to install a statue, plaque or a bike rack in his honor in CaVaLa Park.
The other options are renaming the Hudson River Bike Path, raising money for the Downtown Hospital and a creating a scholarship at Stuyvesant High School, where Capsouto was a graduate, said Community Board 1 Community Liason Michael Levine.
A memorandum will now be drawn up and finalized, and then presented to the full community board for a vote. If they decide to rename CaVaLa Park, the plan then goes before the city Parks Department.