Tuesday, April 12, 2011

When Will the Lawn Be Open?

It probably doesn't surprise you that the most popular question we get in the springtime is when will the lawn be open? This year the answer to that question is: a little later than usual.

Because our lawn is the most heavily used green space in midtown, keeping it open to the public for as many days as possible throughout the summer is one of our top priorities every year. At the same time, we have to do all we can to make sure the lawn can stand up to that constant use during the summer months.

In recent updates, we've touched on the projects happening in the lawn area that are necessary to improve the long-term health of the lawn area and soil base, as well as the project to upgrade the entire park's power distribution capabilities for which conduits were laid beneath the lawn's surface.

The crews on the lawn are currently working on

- improvements to the irrigation system to help manage wet and muddy spots that can develop during the summer season;

- a new subsurface drainage system for the same reasons;

- and replacement of the old, deficient soil with a new sod-friendly soil profile to create optimal conditions for the sod to root and grow.

Although the lawn has typically been ready for public use by the beginning of May, these projects (and the rainy spring weather that caused a few delays) have pushed our opening date to later in the month. In the future we will return to our regular schedule.

Installation of the sod is currently scheduled to begin on May 5 and will take two days, followed by at least two weeks that are needed for the sod to root before we can open the lawn for public use. So, thank you for your patience...it will be worth it in the end.

Check out these posts for past updates on the lawn installation and other capital projects happening in the park this spring:


  1. I think it's an ecological shame that the lawn gets ripped up and replanted every year- surely you'll have a snappy response why this isn't actually as environmentally un-friendly as it seems!

  2. Hi LP,

    Thank you for your comment. Because of the park’s volume of visitors and seasonal events schedule, grass could not survive in the space without the re-sodding process we implement every year. During the winter season, our free admission ice skating rink, Citi Pond, sits on top of the lawn and surrounding gravel areas. The rink is a beloved amenity that helps the park remain an active and safe public space in cold weather months, and when it is dismantled at the end of the winter season we re-sod the lawn area in order for the grass to become healthy enough to accommodate heavy public use in the summer time. The Bryant Park lawn is another of the park’s beloved amenities, as well as one of only a few green spaces in midtown Manhattan, so we are dedicated to providing park visitors with lush, green grass they can enjoy every summer.

    Thank you for visiting the blog,

  3. Hi Katie,

    I would tend to agree with LP. There have to be spaces that are just as active that do not re-sod their lawns each year. I'd have to wonder if it has something to do with the ice skating rink sitting on top of the lawn for so long. I think that Bryant Park would still be "an active and safe space" without that rink. While it's nice having it there, I don't know if it really should be there ?


  4. I am an active visitor to Bryant Park in every season. I would like to express my sincere appreciation to all those who are responsible for providing joyful experiences all year long for the public and for world visitors. As a NYer I am very proud of Bryant Park. It currently rivals the best parks in the entire world.

  5. Hi Cat -

    Thank you for joining the discussion. You are right, the rink does affect the lawn area and re-sodding process. Do we *need* to have an ice rink in the park? No. But we do think that overall it enhances visitors' experiences in the winter season. I hope that you'll still visit us and take advantage of your favorite aspects of the park!

    Hi Tom -

    Thank you for your patronage and incredible compliments. On behalf of BPC, we appreciate the support!

    Best to you both,