R2G in Action

Public Parks and Greenspace

Liberty Bell Park Project Overview

Originally built in 1999 following the renovation of the historic Hotel Utica, Liberty Bell Park had fallen into a state of disrepair when in 2011 the Rust2Green initiative began identifying areas in downtown Utica for design build interventions. Liberty Bell Park is located at what is known as the 'Busy Corner' of Genesee Street in the heart of downtown, making it a critical location to focus revitalization efforts. Initial phases of the project began in the spring of 2011 when Cornell students undertook an initial inventory and assessment of the area, explored different precedents and options for how to handle the space, generated schematic concept ideas, and met with community partners to identify and prioritize strategies for revitalization and use of the site.

Originally built in 1999 following the renovation of the historic Hotel Utica, Liberty Bell Park had fallen into a state of disrepair when in 2011 the Rust2Green initiative began identifying areas in downtown Utica for design build interventions. Liberty Bell Park is located at what is known as the 'Busy Corner' of Genesee Street in the heart of downtown, making it a critical location to focus revitalization efforts. Initial phases of the project began in the spring of 2011 when Cornell students undertook an initial inventory and assessment of the area, explored different precedents and options for how to handle the space, generated schematic concept ideas, and met with community partners to identify and prioritize strategies for revitalization and use of the site.

Over the course of 12 weeks the park was transformed. Diverse plantings create urban habitat opportunities while providing year round interest and permeable pavers incorporate sustainable building practices while creating formal seating areas.

Project Goals
  • Create inviting public area that would encourage individual use and support community gatherings during public events.
  • Increase opportunities for animal habitat in the urban environment by selecting plants that attract birds, butterflies, and insects.
  • Increase opportunities for animal habitat in the urban environment by selecting plants that attract birds, butterflies, and insects.
Partners
  • City of Utica Parks Department
  • Utica Fire Department
  • Landmarks Society of Greater Utica
  • Downtown Urban Development Association
  • Utica Monday Nite