Parks, Recreation and Historic Preservation

Press Release

August 02, 2018

New York State Announces $2.5 Million to Improve Fourteen Playgrounds at State Parks Across New York

Builds on Efforts of State Parks to Add or Improve 100 Playgrounds By 2020

Governor Andrew M. Cuomo today announced New York has committed $2.5 million to build or improve fourteen playgrounds at State Parks across New York. This funding is part of the Governor's goal to modernize 100 State Park playgrounds by 2020. The park improvements reflect the state's Connect Kids to Parks program, which aims to draw more youth to the outdoors by offering free day-use park entry to fourth-grade students and their families, and a new transportation grant program to help school children visit state parks.

"Quality playgrounds are a magnet for families, drawing children to parks and inspiring New York's youth to enjoy healthy recreation throughout their lives," Governor Cuomo said. "These improvement projects build on New York's efforts to make state parks more user-friendly, safe and fun, and will encourage residents and visitors to experience the Empire State and discover our great outdoors."

Under the initiative, State Parks will replace outdated playgrounds at parks with modern, code-compliant equipment and in distinct areas for young and older age groups. Playground improvements will be coupled with site improvements, including shade trees or canopies, seating, water fountains and trail/walkway connections to the rest of the park.

The State Parks include:

Capital District

  • Taconic State Park at Copake Falls

Central New York

  • Two playgrounds at Fair Haven State Park

Long Island

  • Wildwood State Park

Finger Lakes

  • Lakeside State Park
  • Seneca Lake State Park

Western New York

  • Beaver Island State Park
  • Evangola State Park
  • Wilson-Tuscarora State Park

Mid-Hudson Valley

  • Mills-Norrie State Park

North Country

  • Higley Flow State Park
  • Keewaydin State Park
  • Southwick Beach State Park

Southern Tier

  • Taughannock Falls State Park

"Playgrounds encourage families with children to enjoy healthy, active play, and help spark a lifelong love of parks and nature," said State Parks Commissioner Rose Harvey. "I am grateful to Governor Cuomo for helping provide the safe, modern park facilities New York families need."

The playgrounds are funded by Governor Cuomo's NY Parks 2020 state park revitalization plan, which includes a commitment to add or improve 100 playgrounds by 2020. NY Parks 2020 is a multi-year commitment to leverage $900 million in private and public funding for State Parks from 2011 to 2020. The 2018-19 State Budget allocates $90 million toward this initiative.

The New York State Office of Parks, Recreation and Historic Preservation oversees more 250 individual parks, historic sites, golf courses, recreational trails and boat launches, which are visited by 71 million people annually. For more information on any of these recreation areas, visit