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News April 2019

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Efforts to save a rare brutalist landscape in Fort Greene Park resume with lawsuit

April 29, 2019

At the northwest entrance to Brooklyn’s Fort Greene Park, a 1971 renovation designed by landscape architect A.E. Bye Jr., will get a new chance at survival. Friends of Fort Greene Park, which includes local residents and preservationists, and the Sierra Club filed a lawsuit on April 1 in response to NYC Park’s $10.5 million renovation plan for the park. Arthur Edwin (A.E.) Bye, Jr. (1919–2001) designed a series of low, undulating cobblestone mounds—easily labeled Brutalist—as a procession from the park entrance to its central monument. NYC Park’s plan, which would remove all of the Bye designed elements, was approved by the LPC in April 2017. Among the lawsuit’s complaints is that NYC Parks used means to avoid conducting a full environmental review. Fort Greene Park, designed by Frederick Law Olmsted and Calvert Vaux in 1868, has seen three major renovations in its lifetime. The fourth is now pending.

“Neighbors and preservationists sue NYC Parks Department to save a rare brutalist landscape,” Architects Newspaper, April 12, 2019.

Arthur Edwin (A.E.) Bye's stone-and-grass mounds in Fort Greene Park, Brooklyn, NY.