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Letter from the Mayor

About The Gates

About Christo and Jeanne-Claude

Christo and Jeanne-Claude in Their Own Words

About Central Park

Visual Arts Organizations Near Central Park

Images from The Gates

Photos of Other Christo Works

Press Information and Additional Resources

Official The Gates Merchandise

Download Guide to The Gates

Download Map of The Gates

About Central Park, New York City

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  • Central Park is 843 acres (11.2 km2); its 6-mile (9.6 km) perimeter extends from Central Park West to Fifth Avenue, and 59th to 110th Streets.

  • Central Park is the first major landscaped public park in the USA, North America. A competition for the design was held in 1858. The winners were Frederick Law Olmsted and Calvert Vaux.

  • The Manhattan rock outcrops in the Park are approximately 450 million years old.

  • Central Park contains 58 miles (92.8 km) of pedestrian paths, 4.5 miles (7.2 km) of bridle trail, 6.5 miles (10.4 km) of Park Drive, and 7 miles (11.2 km) of benches (nearly 9,000).

  • The Park’s 843 acres (11.2 km2) include 136 acres (.5 km2) of woodlands, 250 acres (1 km2) of lawns, and 150 acres (.6 k m2) of water in seven water bodies.

  • More than a half million shrubs, trees, and vines were planted during the building of the Park. Today, there are more than 26,000 trees, including 1,700 American elms.

  • More than 25 million visitors enjoy Central Park each year.

  • Central Park’s landscapes were created from barren swampland. It took 16 years and over $14 million (roughly $260 million today) to build the Park.

  • To construct the Park, workers moved nearly five million cubic yards (3.8 million m3) of stone, earth, and topsoil. They built 30 bridges and arches, and 11 overpasses over sunken transverse roads.

  • The northern end of the Park was the site of a series of fortifications for the Revolutionary War and the War of 1812.

  • Belvedere Castle was completed in 1872 as a viewing pavilion overlooking the Croton Reservoir. In 1937, the Reservoir was filled in to become the Great Lawn.

  • There are 51 sculptures in the Park and 36 bridges and arches.

  • Bethesda Fountain was the only sculpture included in the original construction of the Park.

  • Central Park was declared a National Historic Landmark in 1965 and a New York City Landmark in 1974.

  • Since 1980, a public-private partnership between New York City and the Central Park Conservancy has restored and preserved Central Park. The Central Park Conservancy is responsible for the maintenance and continuing preservation of the Park and has raised over $300 million for its care.


For more information about Central Park, please visit The Central Park
Conservancy website,, or the New York City Department of
Parks & Recreation website,

Copyright 2007 The City of New York