September 26, By Tara Law
A small Astoria park located by the Triborough Bridge has been named one of 67 parks to receive a major upgrade under the NYC Community Parks Initiative.
Chappetto Square, a 1.25 acre park located on Hoyt Ave (between 21st and 23rd streets), was named yesterday by Mayor Bill de Blasio and NYC Parks Commissioner Mitchell J. Silver to receive funding as part of the initiative.
The park, which contains a hockey rink and a flagpole, is likely to see a major injection of money. Eleven parks were named as part of the fall initiative yesterday, with $65 million being split among those 11 sites.
The CPI is a $318 million program that looks to renovate and upgrade 67 parks that have received less than $250,000 over the last 20 years.
Councilman Costa Constantinides said that Chappetto Square was in need of an upgrade.
“As a greenspace that is so frequently used yet hasn’t been renovated in many years, the CPI funding for Chappetto Square will provide a real benefit to the neighborhood around it,” Constantinides said in a statement.
The park will be “totally reconstructed,” said Meghan Lalor, a spokeswoman for the Parks Dept.
The Parks Dept. will be holding public planning meetings in October and November to get feedback from residents about what Chappetto Square needs. The budget and scope of the reconstruction will be announced after the meeting. The date for Chappetto Square’s planning meeting will be announced in the coming weeks.
The revamp is expected to be completed by late 2020 or early 2021.
Chappetto Square, while referred to as greenspace, is mostly asphalt.
Nevertheless, Martha Lopez-Gilpin, the president of the Astoria Parks Alliance, said spaces like the Square are important, especially to children who live nearby.
“I was glad to see it was acknowledged as a park,” said Lopez-Gilpin. “If we acknowledge that these parks are being used, it shows respect for the people who are using these spaces.”