The New York City Department of Transportation (DOT), NYC Department of Environmental Protection (DEP), NYC Department of Parks and Recreation (NYC Parks) and NYC Department of Design and Construction (DDC) say they have completed a $18.4 million capital project to revamp Montefiore Square in Harlem and expand the area onto Hamilton Place between Broadway and West 138th Street and upgrade water infrastructure. The project was funded by DOT and DEP and was managed by DDC.
The newly redesigned Montefiore Square has tripled in size, sitting at 44,650 sq. ft. The plaza features a central terraced 13,140-sq. ft. lawn with 1,030 feet of curved granite walls and 19 benches for seating. The expanded plaza space enables NYC Parks to stage enhanced community festivals, performances and green markets, while residents of the community stroll through the square on new granite pavers set in a concentric running bond arc pattern. Evening visibility was increased with the installation of 12 street lights.
Throughout Montefiore Square, 36 new trees were added to the space and new planted areas along the perimeter of the expanded Square act as buffers for users from the busy surrounding streets. The plaza features new gardens, along with new plumbing and a drinking fountain. A new wayfinding sign was installed to help commuters and tourists navigate the area. A new utility storage column houses the electrical panels, irrigation controls, electrical panel and electric meter.
“The expansion of Montefiore Square required relocating and upgrading much of the subsurface infrastructure that provides critical services to the residents and businesses in the neighborhood – including water mains, sewers and catch basins,” DEP Commissioner Vincent Sapienza said in a Jan. 27 statement.”
“The redesigned Montefiore Square triples the amount of open space for the community and the students of the nearby Hamilton Grange School and City College of New York,” said DDC Commissioner Thomas Foley. “We are delighted to work with our partners at DOT, DEP and Parks to continue to give back more pedestrian space in every borough and fulfill the City’s Vision Zero goals to calm traffic and create safer streets.
The underground infrastructure surrounding the park was upgraded to improve water infrastructure reliability with the replacement of over 2,840 feet of water mains. To reduce flooding, four catch basins were replaced, and eight additional catch basins were installed. Fire protection was enhanced with the replacement of six old fire hydrants.
As part of the final street restoration, 22,090 square feet of sidewalk and 910 feet of curbs were reconstructed. Pedestrian safety was improved with the installation of four curb extensions to shorten the distance for pedestrians to cross the street on Broadway between West 136th Street and West 138th Street and on West 138th Street between Broadway and Hamilton Place.