June 19


Community Members Share Thoughts on Floyd Bennett Field Revitalization Plans

June 19, 2023

Around 10 Mill Basin and Marine Park residents attended a community meeting on June 5th at P.S./I.S. 207, at 4011 Fillmore Avenue, to discuss the future of Floyd Bennett Field.

The city’s first municipal airport and then a longtime naval air station, Floyd Bennett is now part of the National Parks Service.  Located off the Belt Parkway, much of the area is fields and paved expanses, though there’s also the Aviator Sports Complex, community garden, archery range, campgrounds and kayak launch. The park is also home to a U.S. Coast Guard station and NYPD and Sanitation Department training grounds.

The Jamaica Bay Rockaway Parks Conservancy (JBRPC) is working on a plan to revitalize the park and create more attractions for visitors. As part of the process, the organization is looking for community input. “Floyd Bennett Field has been active and it’s primed to be an active hub for community and climate resilience once again,” Carta said.

Part of this project is renovations of two of the old airplane hangars on the property, Hangars 3 and 4. The first two hangars were renovated years ago, leaving the remaining two to decay.

During the meeting, JBRPC Executive Director Terri Carta had attendees fill out a survey sharing what they thought the renovated hangars should be used for. Respondents overwhelming said they wanted to see food and beverage service available in one of the hangars. Other popular choices were bike rentals and educational programs.

Another aspect of the park that needs to be worked on is transportation. Being that the park is off the Belt, there aren’t many transit options to get people to Floyd Bennett.  Parkgoers can get there by car or by bike. Technically, a person could get there on foot, as well, if they were willing to walk along the side of the highway. There are no train stations, and the only bus that goes there is the Rockaways’ Q35, which makes a single stop along the park in front of the gates to the Ryan Visitor Center.

Recently, the New York State Research and Development Authority awarded a three-year grant to create a circuit van route through the Rockaways as a supplement to public transit. Carta said the hope is that the route can be extended along the Belt and into the park, where it can make stops at different destinations.

There will also be a high school coming to the park in three years, Launch Expeditionary Learning Charter School.

“People really want Floyd Bennett Field to be a destination,” Carta said. “It has huge potential to be a destination park and that’s one of the things we heard a lot about.”

How would you activate Floyd Bennett Field?  Visit jbrpc.org/future to share your thoughts.

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