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Sports Fields on Sunset Park Waterfront Slated to Open by October

By Alan Neuhauser | January 23, 2013 12:31pm

SUNSET PARK — The first green space to be built in Sunset Park in at least a decade is slated to open to the public this fall, officials said, adding much-needed parkland to one of Brooklyn's most densely-populated neighborhoods.

"It will be the first significant [park] space added to our community in many, many years," Brooklyn Community Board 7 District Manager Jeremy Laufer told DNAinfo.com New York.

"We have less than a third of the city's standard of parkland per capita. The city standard is 1.5 acres per thousand residents. We have 0.41 acres."

Bush Terminal Piers Park, built atop brownfield along the waterfront between 43rd and 51st streets, will open to the public by October, Laufer said.

It will include softball and soccer fields, tidal ponds, and a wooded area with walking paths. Workers are also laying electrical and sewer lines for an environmental center and children's play area that could be built with more funds allocated later.

The park, part of the New York City Economic Development Corporation's "Sunset Park Vision Plan," cost $38.5 million to construct, the EDC said. Once finished, oversight of the space will transfer to the Parks Department.

Separated from First Avenue by warehouses and a wide parking lot, access will be from 43rd Street, but Laufer said the community board might seek to open another entrance at 51st Street — the location of a Port Authority "rail float bridge," which carries freight cars across New York Harbor.

"We're hopeful that we're going to be able to negotiate a secondary entrance," Laufer said.