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Paley Park

Paley Park is a pocket park located at 3 East 53rd Street in Midtown Manhattan on the former site of the Stork Club. Designed by the landscape architectural firm of Zion & Breen, it opened May 23, 1967. Paley Park is often cited as one of the finest urban spaces in the United States.

Measuring 4,200 square feet (390 m2), the park offers a quiet urban oasis in the midst of the bustling city by the careful use of falling water, airy trees, lightweight furniture and simple spatial organization.

Key to its success is a 20-foot (6.1 m) high waterfall spanning the entire back of the park. The waterfall creates a backdrop of grey noise to mask the sounds of the city. The park is surrounded by walls on three sides and is open to the street (with an ornamental gate) on the fourth side, facing the street. The walls are covered in ivy, and the overhead canopy formed by honey locust trees adds a degree of serenity to the park.

A privately owned public space, Paley Park was financed by the William S. Paley Foundation and was named by Paley for his father, Samuel Paley. A plaque near the entrance reads:

This park is set aside in memory of Samuel Paley, 1875–1963, for the enjoyment of the public.

Social interaction in the park was analyzed in the film The Social Life of Small Urban Spaces by William H. Whyte.

Paley Park served as the inspiration for a similarly sized urban park in Charleston, South Carolina, that opened in June 2015 and is known as Theodora Park.

Visitors 15
Oldest photo 11/02/2012
Newest photo 07/27/2013
Alternative titles "Waterfall in Paley Park"
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