December 18th Update of proposals for Delancey South and Grand North:

– Revised December 18th 2022

(former draft proposals are kept on the website (below) – we get smarter and more informed as we talk and listen to our neighbors).

Specifically, on the proposal for Sara Roosevelt Park Hester to South Delancey:

We’ve listened to nearby residents, local organizations, gardeners, businesses, and sports users, we’ve sent out updates, used social media, and conducted one in-park tabling for ideas and to create awareness (not nearly enough).

Our proposals, as always, draft pending true community engagement.  “In-Park” outreach with no ties to gentrification histories needed.

For safety, for beauty, for public park uses, for maintaining our unique strengths and our diversity, while upgrading for even more positive use, for encouraging the neighborhood and public to see Parks as their backyards, get-away vacation spots, their air-conditioning, for for uses aligned with the needs of our neighborhoods, that do not encourage further displacement of the low-income communities of color here via gentrification:

  • After a number of consultations with birders over the years: New wrought iron fence around the bird sanctuary 5-7’ tall -north end for safety, 4’ for south section with gate so there are two means of egress in an emergency. Consult birders for any changes.
  • Grand St. entryway. Remove brick walls along Grand Str for maximum visibility from the street.
  • South Delancey entryway Remove broken steps, create two wide accessible pathways.
  • Retain community stewarded garden plots.
  • Pipe a water source – for Bruckner box and water fountain.
  • Remove low brick walls that front the two side plots – misused. Restore decorative gates.
  • Attach two metal tables in the open walk-way areas. Visible from street to provide seating that doesn’t encourage harmful or unsanitary acts.
  • Repair asphalt from Delancey to Grand, or as much as funding allows, for accessibility.
  • New, brighter lighting, downward facing in the area.
  • Less vital: Fix the benches along the Pit.
  • Do in sections so most of the park can remain open.
  • Fix drainage in Pit in southern end.
  • Share the Broome Parkhouse with a local community organization or return it for full community activation.
  • We are currently seeking information from those who would be most impacted but we do not have enough information on what the people of  Forsyth Hester to Grand section want/need. Such as, how would it affect their parking needs? Small businesses, the local schools, Parks Dept, and residents need to weigh in on this part of the proposal.
  • We assume Parks Department will address and heed all of this.

We have a synthetic turf field in this section and are oversaturated with synthetic turf fields (used primarily by outside groups). Issues with carcinogenic materials.

More problematically, no one we spoke to, who lives (or plays) or has businesses here (for decades) had heard of this or, if they had, did not think it affected them.

In this area of SRP ‘The Pit’ is one of the only active, versatile, and well used space (by the community): The Burmese Water Festival, the New Museum, elected officials, ROAR, badminton, Tai Chi, Bike Polo, Soccer (the soccer ‘pitch’ recently painted as an East River Park mitigation), etc. As such, The Pit use makes the area safer, as does the gardening by SRPCC volunteers and the 5th Pct’s Youth Explorers. City Relief also provides a safety on south Delancey on Thursdays.

– Revised December 18th 2022

(former draft proposals are kept on the website – we get smarter and more informed as we ask our neighbors).


revised since July 2022 SRPCC Update

Petition To Save “The Pit” and Draft Proposals for Delancey St. South to Grand St. North

Updated Draft Proposals for Upgrades & Safety Measures: Grand north to Delancey south

And Please Sign Our Petition: “Don’t Bury The Pit!” 


Draft proposal for upgrading Delancey/Broome Street/Grand section in Sara Roosevelt Park


Current Use: 4 large garden plots (one, the Hua Mei Bird Sanctuary, 3 main entryways, one Parkhouse (serving all five NYC boroughs), Park’s staff parking inside the park at Broome, a synthetic turf soccer field, and ‘The Pit’.



-Grand Street: Open up for maximum visibility. Remove high brick walls alongside Grand to create maximum visibility from the street. Repair sloping entryway.

-Delancey Street: Renovate entryway for wheelchair accessibility. Redo plaza with permeable pavers.


Bird Sanctuary and three plots on Delancey


Hua Mei Bird Garden: Install new 7’ wrought iron fence surrounding this garden for safety. Remove dilapidated temporary fencing to restore gate to original opening between ‘The Pit’ and the Garden to allow for two egresses in an emergency. Remove two benches nearest the Bird Garden that overlook the Pit.

Three front gardens: remove broken low brick walls that front the side plots that are misused.

Pipe a water source for all gardens – Bruckner boxes and water fountain.

-Seating in plaza: fasten 2 small metal tables with attached seating – close to street.

– Dept. of Sanitation install trash cans both sides of Delancey (ala ChinatownBID’s on Grand).


Preserve/Repair/Upgrade ‘The Pit’ Area: [See details of the Petition and Sign here!].

‘The Pit’ is a vital, flexible, shared and uniquely multi-use adaptive space. It’s the areas main anchor of positive use. 

Preserve the uniquely flexible Pit area – reimagined for even more flexibility.

Street soccer, ball hockey, bike polo, skateboarders, skaters, uni-cyclers. Children learn biking, Tai Chi, running track, Burmese Water Festival, New Museum, ROAR resource fair, Chinese Progressive Assoc., Stanton CSA, CB3, bike helmet giveaways, local children’s programming, movies under the stars, outdoor roller rink, with headphones piping music into participants’ ears.

There are a series of upgrades that can be made to “The Pit” to enhance it without fundamentally changing what it is and who it serves:
  1. Unclog and repair drainage in The Pit at the southern end, which has been a longstanding problem.
  2. Addition of a community ceramic mural to the walls surrounding “The Pit” to emphasize it as an actively used space.

  3. Installation of “Goalpher,” a 4 foot high and 6 foot wide subterranean goal system that can be opened when the community wants to play soccer, ball hockey, or bike polo, and put away underground when the community wants to use the space for any other purpose. When the goal is stored away, it is stored underground and the space can operate as if it isn’t there.

  4. Return benches to the southern end and repaint benches surrounding the Pit.

  5. End parking of Parks staff inside the park in the Broome area in front of the parkhouse.

  6. Additional lighting to enhance late night play and all around safety.


As funding allows:

-Install permeable pavers Grand to Delancey – work in sections to allow some areas to remain open.

-Activate the Broome Parkhouse with a shared use that dynamically engages parkgoers here.


Don’t Bury “The Pit”!

Join the Sara D. Roosevelt Park Coalition and sign our petition!



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