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Construction on Staten Island’s Conference Park is finally moving forward

After years of delay, the city has issued an invitation for construction bids on the new pavilion

Rendering Conference House Park
Sage and Coombe via DNAinfo

Staten Island’s Conference House Park pavilion should have been well into its $3.7 million renovation by now but a series of setbacks has kept the project dormant for years. Alas, the project will finally move forward as the Department of Parks finally issued an invitation for construction bids, reports DNAinfo.

The historic park, named after the unsuccessful Staten Island Peace Conference held there on September 11, 1776, occupies the southernmost tip of the city, making it vulnerable to storm damage, which is precisely what has happened throughout the years. In 2002, the pavilion was rebuilt as part of a $14 million park revamp, however, it was closed to the public in 2011 after weather damage to the roof and deck forced the city to deem it unsafe. Since then, it has sat awaiting repair.

Funding was made available in 2015 but the project was stalled due to inter-agency conflict. The Department of Transportation and the Department of Environmental Conservation had “communication issues” that resulted in delays in the design phase, postponing it for a full year. Construction was to begin in 2016 but that too was delayed.

Conference House Park has a storied past. Aside from hosting the historical peace conference, the site was also used as a Lenape Indian burial ground thousands of years before European contact. Once the $3.7 million reconstruction is complete, the new pavilion will consist of a 4,200-square-foot space, designed by Sage and Coombe, that can be used to host weddings, concerts, and other events.

Construction is expected to finally begin sometime this year.