Restoration of the northeast corner of Central Park

The Harlem Meer project restored 17 acres in the northeast corner of New York City’s Central Park, reconnecting it to surrounding inner-city communities. The Central Park Conservancy and City of New York Department of Parks and Recreation worked together to clean up a polluted 11-acre lake, restore the surrounding landscape, renovate a historic boathouse and playground, and build a new discovery center to revitalize the park and nearby neighborhoods.

The nonprofit Central Park Conservancy partnered with the city parks department to achieve what neither could do on its own.

1995 Selection Committee

The project restored a seriously degraded natural habitat and returned a beautiful and important amenity to the area. The Charles A. Dana Discovery Center hosts free community programs and exhibits to educate visitors about the ecosystem and wildlife, and visitors can enjoy a wide range of activities, including fishing, skating, and swimming. The Harlem Meer has helped reintegrate the north and south ends of the park, and the Conservancy worked closely with local neighborhoods throughout the planning process.