Downing Park (Newburgh, New York)

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Downing Park
Downing Park, Newburgh, NY.jpg
The pond and fountain, known as the polly
Type public park
Location Newburgh, NY, USA
Coordinates 41°30′22″N 74°01′06″W / 41.50611°N 74.01833°W / 41.50611; -74.01833
Area 35 acres (14 ha)
Created 1897
Operated by Downing Park Planning Committee, City of Newburgh


Downing Park is the largest of several public parks in the city of Newburgh, New York, USA. The park was designed in the late 19th century by Frederick Law Olmsted and Calvert Vaux, who gave the design to the city on the condition it would be named after their mentor, Andrew Jackson Downing, a Newburgh native who had died in a steamboat accident on the Hudson River in 1852. They delivered their plans to the city, which had acquired the land two years earlier, in 1889; the park was completed and opened in 1897. It was the last collaboration between the two.

It is centrally located within the city, between Robinson Avenue (US 9W-NY 32) on the west, South Street on the north, Dubois Street on the east and Third Street to the south. Carpenter Avenue divides the park into an eastern and western half.

The most prominent feature of the park is the pond and fountain in its southwest corner, known as the "polly." In the early 20th century, it was a popular place for ice skating in the winter, but that has since been prohibited as pollution has made the water less capable of effectively freezing up in the winter. To the east, the land rises to a small hill, the terrace, which overlooks the Hudson. Other amenities in the park include the stone Shelter House on the polly, the headquarters of the Downing Park Planning Committee, and an amphitheater to the north of the polly, host to many local concerts and festivals in the summer months.

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Coordinates: 41°30′22″N 74°01′06″W / 41.5060°N 74.0183°W / 41.5060; -74.0183