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Brooklyn Naval Cemetery Gets Second Life as Public Park

After being closed for nine decades, the former cemetery is now a vibrant green park

For the first time in 90 years, the Naval Hospital Cemetery Memorial Landscape at the Brooklyn Navy Yard has opened to the public, reports DNAinfo. As part of the Brooklyn Waterfront Greenway initiative to create more open green space, the memorial has been revitalized with pedestrian wooden walkways, stone markers, and a series of native wildflowers, grasses, trees, and shrubs.

Designed by Marvel Architects and Nelson Byrd Woltz Landscape Architects, the park’s new landscaping symbolizes the constant renewal of life in its many forms while simultaneously honoring the over 2,000 naval officers and Marines that were laid to rest at there between 1834 and 1910. It is designed to be an inviting pollinator habitat to birds, bees, and butterflies while also serving as a space "where the community can come together," states Brooklyn Navy Yard President and CEO, David Ehrenberg.

To celebrate the opening of the park, local officials and community members took part in an official ribbon-cutting ceremony on Friday that included performances from the TILT Brass Band and the Green School G Squad Step Group.

The Naval Hospital Cemetery Memorial Landscape will be open Wednesdays through Sundays, from 8 a.m. to 8 p.m, and closed Sundays through Tuesdays.