NYC Parks & NYCEDC Break Ground on $87 Million Restoration of the Orchard Beach Pavilion




Photo credit: NYC Parks/Malcolm Pinckney

NYC Parks Commissioner Sue Donoghue & New York City Economic Development Corporation (NYCEDC) Chief Infrastructure Officer Josh Kraus joined Bronx Borough President Vanessa Gibson, State Assembly Member Michael Benedetto, Council Member Marjorie Velazquez, Council Member Amanda Farias, Council Member Rafael Salamanca Jr., President of the Friends of Pelham Bay Park Nilka Martell, Community Board 10 Parks Chair Terence Franklin, and members of the community to officially break ground on the $87 million Orchard Beach Pavilion project to restore the historic 140,000 square foot space. 

“This $87 million project will be a boon for the Bronxites, and with it, we’re showing that this administration will continue to ‘Get Stuff Done’ for New Yorkers, investing in our public green spaces to serve generations to come.”  …. New York City Mayor Eric Adams.

Photo credit: NYC Parks/Malcolm Pinckney

“Today marks a major milestone in our efforts to enhance the visitor experience at Orchard Beach, and we are thrilled to break ground on the Pavilion project to restore this historic landmark,” said NYC Parks Commissioner Sue Donoghue. “Once complete, the Pavilion will feature a wide range of amenities for residents and visitors alike and expand access to the beach for all members of the community. We can’t wait to cut the ribbon on this project, and we thank all of our partners on this project for helping to make this restoration a reality.”

Photo credit: NYC Parks/Malcolm Pinckney

The $87 million Orchard Beach Pavilion project is a joint project between NYC Parks & NYCEDC. The three primary objectives for the project are to restore the historic architecture of the landmarked building, provide greater ADA access, and provide welcoming and viable amenities for the community:

Pavilion Reconstruction & Restoration:

As part of the project, the historic structural concrete roofs will be reconstructed with additional exterior finishes, including limestone cladding, glazed terracotta, terrazzo, cement plaster, and metalwork to be restored.  Additional trees will be planted, and new light fixtures will provide illumination levels which meet current standards for the restored Pavilion.

  New Accessibility:

The reconstruction project will gently raise the landside approach to the building and provide new accessible ramps to the upper level of the building. On the beachside of the building, a new curving, brick-clad accessible ramp will connect the upper level of the Pavilion down to the beach. For the first time, all visitors to Orchard Beach will enjoy the same equitable access through the Pavilion.


The historic concession spaces in the Loggias and within the Pavilion will be built-out for new concessions. Partitions and finishes will be restored, and resilient new building systems will provide the required mechanical, electrical, and plumbing services for these amenities to operate successfully. Parks will be soliciting proposals from quality food service operators to award concession agreements at Orchard Beach. Other public Pavilion areas will be restored for community use and enjoyment. This work will bring the Orchard Beach Pavilion back to its impressive historic conditions with access and amenities for every member of the community.

Photo credit: NYC Parks/Malcolm Pinckney

Orchard Beach, Bronx’s sole public beach, was proclaimed “The Riviera of New York” when it was created in the 1930s. The 115-acre, 1.1-mile-long beach contains a hexagonal-block promenade, a central pavilion, snack bars, food and souvenir carts, two playgrounds, two picnic areas, a large parking lot, and 26 courts for basketball, volleyball, and handball. Changing areas and showers are available.

Photo credit: NYC Parks/Malcolm Pinckney

See what else the New York City Parks Department has been doing this year, from the new interactive Tree Map and unveiling the design for the Mary Cali Dalton Recreation Center on Staten Island to Plans to the conceptual plan for the completion of Staten Island’s East Shore, and the progress update on the 10th anniversary of Superstorm Sandy.

Don’t miss the monument honoring the 2021 American Nobel Laureates, and all the work done by NYC Parks Department Monuments Conservation Crew.

Catch Wreath Interpretations at The Arsenal Gallery in Central Park before it ends, and don’t forget ~ Parks is looking for Lifeguards!