Westchester Square, Bronx

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Map of the Bronx showing Westchester Square
Map of the Bronx showing Westchester Square
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Map of the Bronx showing Westchester Square

Westchester Square is a residential neighborhood geographically located in the eastern section of the borough of The Bronx in New York City. The neighborhood is part of Bronx Community Board 10. Its boundaries, starting from the north and moving clockwise are: East Tremont Avenue and Silver Street, Blondell Avenue and Westchester Creek to the east, Waterbury Avenue to the south and Castle Hill Avenue to the west. The main roadways into and out of Westchester Square are East Tremont Avenue, Westchester Avenue and Williamsbridge Road. ZIP codes include 10461 and 10462.[1] The area is patrolled by the 45th Precinct located at 2877 Barkley Avenue Bronx, New York 10465.

History[edit]

It was founded in 1693 by settlers who followed the Bronx Creek down to a path behind what is now Lehman High School to where the Square is now. It was called Westchester Village, and was the location of several skirmishes during the Civil War. It was the County seat of Westchester County until 1898, when the area became park of greater New York City. The Square is still laid out like a village, with the Owen Dolen Plaza, previously the village green, once again a central feature of the community. It maintained a rural and small town atmosphere until 1920, when the Lexington Avenue IRT elevated line extended to Westchester Square, although there are still many 19th Century homes throughout the neighborhood, including several old Victorian mansions. In addition, the Huntington Free Library is a time capsule of 19th Century Westchester Square history, and is largely unchanged from its opening in the 1890s.

Parks and recreation[edit]

Owen Dolen Park[edit]

Owen Dolen Park is bordered by Westchester Ave, Lane Avenue and Williamsbridge Road. It was recently renovated and rededicated in June 2013. [2] The $4.72 million renovation of the park was started in September 2011. It was named after Owen Dolen a lifelong community resident and teacher, in 1926. Dolen had died of a heart attack a year earlier after giving a speech at the Square to unveil a granite memorial honoring neighborhood soldiers killed in World War I.[3]

The Pearly Gates Park[edit]

The name for the Pearly Gates Playground is derived from Christian tradition as the entranceway through which souls travel to reach their god after death. The gates of heaven are said to be guarded by Saint Peter, one of the founders of the Christian Church. The playground is named the Pearly Gates, because of its location on St. Peter’s Avenue. The playground originally opened in 1952 under the joint operation of Parks and the Board of Education. The park was originally called the Westchester Playground until 1998, when Parks Commissioner Henry Stern renamed the site The Pearly Gates.[4]

Transportation[edit]

References[edit]

  1. ^ Haller, Vera (November 26, 2013). "Westchester Square, the Bronx: Stay Awhile". New York Times. Retrieved 2013-12-29. 
  2. ^ "Owen Dolan Park reopens in Westchester Square". News 12 The Bronx. Retrieved 2014-01-02. 
  3. ^ Armaghan, Sarah (September 15, 2011). "Westchester Square rehab begins with overhaul of Owen Dolen Park". New York Daily News. Retrieved 2014-01-03. 
  4. ^ "The Pearly Gates". New York City Department of Parks and Recreation. Retrieved 2014-01-03. 

External links[edit]