Parks Dept. Considers NY State Pavilion Plans

BY JOE MARVILLI
Staff Writer

In the near future, the City will decide what to do with a part of Queens’ history.

Although the New York State Pavilion in Flushing Meadows Corona Park is one of the few structures remaining from the 1964-65 World’s Fair, it has been viewed for decades as a crumbling ruin. Now, the City is trying to figure out whether to renovate it, restore it, stabilize it or demolish it.

A conceptual plan by Perkins+Will architects is one of the options on the table for the New York State Pavilion. Other choices include stabilization, restoration to its 1964 design or demolition.

A conceptual plan by Perkins+Will architects is one of the options on the table for the New York State Pavilion. Other choices include stabilization, restoration to its 1964 design or demolition.

Many of the Parks Dept.’s plans split the work between the pavilion’s two major structures. The Tent of Tomorrow is the circular structure that once had a fiberglass roof. The three observation towers, with their circular top decks, offered a view of the City skyline.

The cheapest proposal would be to demolish the entire pavilion, at a cost of $14,264,661.

Two of the Parks Dept. plans, stabilization and restoration, would demolish the Tent of Tomorrow, but fix up the observation towers. The destruction of the Tent would cost $10,613,075. Stabilization would not allow for public access, while restoration would.

The Parks Dept.’s stabilization plan would restore or replace cable hangers and corroded bolts, replace the stairs and add a roof to each observation tower. Landscape lighting, security lighting and intrusion alarms would be added as well. Stabilization would cost $11,434,803.

The restoration plan would bring the towers back to how they were in 1964. This project would cost $20,538,130.
Stabilizing both the observation towers and the Tent of Tomorrow would cost $43,013,753. Restoring access for the two structures would have a $52,117,080 price tag.

A conceptual plan by Perkins+Will architects is also being floated around.

“This calls for modification of the site with things like event spaces, multiple stories for the Tent of Tomorrow with landscaped paths connecting them, an observation deck and elevated garden,” Parks Dept. spokesman Zachary Feder said.

Community meetings will be held in the coming months to receive feedback on the different options, with details to come. An advocacy group, People For The Pavilion, would like to see the site become a cultural space.

“We’d ultimately like to see it repurposed. Later next year, we’re going to be organizing an ideas competition to bring a new mission to it,” Matthew Silva, one of the group’s co-founders, said.

Reach Joe Marvilli at (718) 357-7400, Ext. 125, jmarvilli@queenstribune.com, or @Joey788.