Bayswater Point State Park
|Bayswater Point State Park|
|Location||1479 Point Breeze Place
Far Rockaway, New York
|Nearest city||Queens, New York|
|Area||17 acres (0.069 km2)|
|Operated by||New York State Office of Parks, Recreation and Historic Preservation|
|Visitors||17,566 (in 2014)|
|Website||Bayswater Point State Park|
Bayswater Point State Park is a 17-acre (0.069 km2) state park located on Jamaica Bay in Queens, New York. The park is located at the western end of Mott Avenue in Far Rockaway and is built on land that once housed the mansion and estate of banker Louis A. Heinsheimer.
The land that is now occupied by Bayswater Point State Park was once home to "Breezy Point", an expansive mansion built in 1907 by New York City banker Louis A. Heinsheimer. In 1925, the mansion was converted into a home for disabled children, and it was later used as a home for children with intellectual disabilities before being put on the market in the late 1980s.
A 12-acre (0.049 km2) parcel that was to become Bayswater Point State Park was purchased by the Trust for Public Land in 1986. The mansion, which by that point had been damaged by fire, was demolished in 1987 prior to the land being given to New York State in 1988; only the conservatory was left standing.
New York State designated the land as a state park in 1991, and gave the New York City Audubon Society administrative duties over the park. Between 1994 and 1996, the Audubon Society conducted a research and restoration project at Bayswater Point, seeking to engage the public with the land's conservation.
In early May 2010, the park was briefly closed to the public as a result of budget cuts, along with 57 additional state parks and historic sites. However, by month's end an agreement had been reached to re-open many of the parks, including Bayswater Point. In 2015, an $80,000 improvement project to stabilize Sunset Lodge at the park was announced.
Bayswater Point State Park was established in order to preserve important habitat for migratory birds in Jamaica Bay. The park also protects habitat for butterflies such as the Delaware skipper, and its beach is used by horseshoe crabs during their annual mating season. As such, the park is largely undeveloped, and primarily offers space for passive recreation such as hiking, birdwatching, and fishing.
- NYS Office of Parks, Recreation & Historic Preservation. "Bayswater Point State Park - Getting There". Nysparks.com. Retrieved June 24, 2015.
- "Section O: Environmental Conservation and Recreation". 2014 New York State Statistical Yearbook. The Nelson A. Rockefeller Institute of Government. 2014. Table O-9. Retrieved January 31, 2016.
- "State Park Annual Attendance Figures by Facility: Beginning 2003". Data.ny.gov. Retrieved June 25, 2015.
- Christopher Gray (August 4, 1996). "Limestone Shell Evokes Far Rockaway's Gatsby Era". The New York Times. Retrieved June 25, 2015.
- Seyfried, Vincent (2010). "Bayswater". In Jackson, Kenneth T. The Encyclopedia of New York City (2nd ed.). New Haven: Yale University Press. p. 540. ISBN 0300182570. Retrieved June 25, 2015.
- Fowle, Marcia T.; Kerlinger, Paul (2001). The New York City Audubon Society Guide to Finding Birds in the Metropolitan Area. Ithaca, N.Y.: Comstock Pub. Associates, a division of Cornell University Press. p. 229. ISBN 0801485657. Retrieved June 26, 2015.
- Newman, Andy (May 17, 2010). "Farewell to Bayswater Point". New York Times. Retrieved May 17, 2010.
- Andy Newman (May 27, 2010). "Deal Reached to Reopen Closed State Parks". The New York Times. Retrieved June 25, 2015.
- Joseph Spector (April 21, 2015). "NY parks to get $72M in upgrades". The Journal News. Retrieved June 25, 2015.
- NYS Office of Parks, Recreation & Historic Preservation. "Bayswater Point State Park". Nysparks.com. Retrieved June 25, 2015.