Parks, Recreation and Historic Preservation

Press Release

September 28, 2015

Randy Simons | Dan Keefe
(518) 486-1868 | news@parks.ny.gov

State Parks Unveils Restored Jones Beach Mosaics

The New York State Office of Parks, Recreation and Historic Preservation (State Parks) today formally unveiled five newly rehabilitated Jones Beach mosaics located on the Central Mall walkway. The $177,000 renovation, a partnership between State Parks and the Foundation for Long Island State Parks, Inc., preserves the historic mosaics as they were created under Robert Moses' original design for the park.

"The crumbling and disintegration of the historic mosaics at the gateway to Jones Beach was a symbol of the neglect of our state park system," State Parks Commissioner Rose Harvey said. "The mosaics are part of an intricate level of detail and ornamentation that make Jones Beach such a unique and beloved park, and I'm thrilled visitors will again see them as they appeared when the park opened over 85 years ago. I am very grateful for the support of Governor Cuomo and our partners with the Foundation for Long Island State Parks, Inc. for revitalizing these signature works of art – a revitalization that is ongoing throughout Jones Beach State Park."

"The restored mosaics are literally the centerpiece for a revitalized and rebuilding Jones Beach," Long Island State Parks Commission Chair Bryan Erwin said. "While they remind us of the grandeur of Jones Beach when it opened 75+ years ago, the restoration was accomplished in a modern way--with the engagement of private donors through the Foundation for Long Island State Parks coupled with an investment from Governor Cuomo's NY Parks 2020 program. We are thrilled at the outcome."

The Central Mall mosaics, situated at the historic main entrance to the park, are composed of slate and tinted concrete with brass detailing. The largest, a 12-by-32 foot map of Long Island featuring its State Parks, reflects Moses' view that Jones Beach was the heart of the Long Island Park system. Others feature a pair of seahorses, a lobster, and two anchors in keeping with the park's nautical theme.

Weather and age had caused some of the mosaic pieces to break apart and crumble. Two New York State contractors, Jablonski Building Conservation, Inc. and Graniteworks, Inc., completed the renovation of the mosaics. The work involved documenting their historic appearance, meticulously removing and labeling each individual slate and brass piece, repairing the concrete foundation, and resetting the pieces back in their original position.

Senator Michael Venditto said, "Preserving our history so that future generations of Long Islanders can enjoy the same memories we enjoyed is very important for our culture. I am very pleased that working together with the New York State Parks and the Foundation for Long Island State Parks, we have renovated and preserved the historic mosaics as they were created under Robert Moses' original design for Jones Beach."

Assemblyman David G. McDonough said, "I am pleased that these historic mosaics, originally created under Robert Moses' plan for the park, have been restored to their original state making the Crown Jewel of Long Island, Jones Beach State Park, shine even brighter."

Nassau County Executive Edward P. Mangano said, "I commend Governor Cuomo, State Parks Commissioner Harvey and the Foundation for Long Island State Parks for helping to preserve the historic mosaics at one of our crowned jewels here on Long Island, Jones Beach. These beautiful pieces will be enjoyed for years to come by the countless number of residents and tourists that visit our beautiful beaches throughout the year."

The transformation of Jones Beach State Park underscores Governor Andrew M. Cuomo's commitment to modernizing State Parks and reversing decades of neglect, especially at popular and heavily visited flagship parks. Last year, Governor Cuomo announced the Jones Beach Revitalization Plan to expand recreational opportunities, restore historic and aesthetic grandeur, strengthen storm resiliency, and streamline park entry, all of which will improve economic development and increase visitation to the park. The Governor's NY Parks 2020 plan is a multi-year commitment to leverage a broad range of private and public funding to invest approximately $900 million in State Parks from 2011 to 2020.

The New York State Office of Parks, Recreation and Historic Preservation oversees 180 state parks and 35 historic sites, which are visited by 60 million people annually. For more information on any of these recreation areas, call 518-474-0456 or visit www.nysparks.com, connect on Facebook, or follow on Twitter.

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