Sunday, July 31, 2011

Discovering Jamaica Bay

Did you know that there's a public space in NYC that's bigger than Central Park?

Did you know that you can take a train from Times Square and end up in the wilderness?

Did you know that, amongst NYC's many wonders, we have a national park that contains over 300 species of birds?

It's called Jamaica Bay, one of those places you see on the map but don't think about much. It's just south of Kennedy Airport and is a giant salt water marsh spread over 20,000 acres spanning the southern edges of Brooklyn and Queens. The New York Times has a huge article and amazing video about this amazing natural preserve in the greatest city in the world.

Like most New Yorkers, I've never been there, but I hope to get there soon. 

Fortunately, the future of Jamaica Bay seems bright as a new generation of environmentalists and community activists are taking it upon themselves to save and preserve it. The pictures and video are amazing, seeing this wild and beautiful place with the Empire State Building and the Statue of Liberty in the background. It reminds you that as busy and sophisticated and overbuilt as NYC is, that we're still a part of nature and that we live in it. It's a reminder also that our city doesn't just build buildings and make money but also preserves its natural beauty and makes it accessible to all. 

And it's all just a subway ride away.

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