October 1950, the Brooklyn Promenade opened in not only accord with Robert Moses, but also, the neighborhood of Brooklyn Heights.
In 1940, Moses attempted to design construction that would rip the neighborhood apart for the sake of the Brooklyn-Queens Expressway. Moses usually faced no opposition, but due to the complaints of the wealthy and powerful residents of the nieghborhood, construction was delay for four years until they reached a compromise.
If Moses would create a “cover” for the neighborhood, to protect the residents from highway noise and automobile smoke, the Brooklyn-Queens Expressway could be done. And so was the story.
Known as the “to-go” place for first dates, it may not be so much for the time being. Though the view is not blocked, the mission to “enhance” it is temporarily taking away from the serene scene. This enhancement is known as the Brookyn Bridge Park. Projected to be completed “by the end of 2009,” the nearly incomplete product is to include large lawns for “playing and sunbathing,” “salvage granite ‘river steps’,” a dog run and sand volleyball courts.
With the intent on becoming one of the best tourist attractions for New York City, it has even been awarded a national honor by the Washington, DC-based non-profit Waterfront Center for Comprehensive Waterfront Plans. Of the many pitfalls Moses has accomplished, this definitely has to be the best of them all— although that may be due to the fact that this was not an “original” idea of his in the first place.
Dating back to 1827, New York pioneer Hezekiah Pierreponte imagined a place for his neighborhood that could rival Manhattan’s Battery Park. He “lived and died in the belief and desire, that the Heights some day be made a public promenade,” reads a 19th century history book of his passion. In the end, he gave up his dream in the light of keeping a valued friendship, of which his proposal had began to deteriorate due to heavy opposition.
Possibly Moses didn’t come up with this idea on his own– but it definitely can be considered one of his most successful designs yet.