In 1888, the New York State Legislature made a groundbreaking decision to create a Bronx park system, which included the formation of Pelham Bay Park - the largest park in the city. This park was formed by consolidating a group of private estates and natural wetlands, and it has 13 miles of shoreline surrounding Long Island Sound. The southwestern part of Pelham Bay Park contains several recreational facilities, but unlike the rest of the park, it primarily serves nearby neighborhoods. The New Parks Movement, activist John Mullaly, and others were instrumental in getting the New Parks Act passed by the New York State Legislature. This act established three highways and six parks in the Bronx, including Pelham Bay Park.
At that time, it was part of Westchester County. Tucked away in the northeast section of the Bronx is the lesser-known Pelham Bay Park, a reminder of the district's bucolic past. Vito Occhino, a resident and owner of Mangia's Brick Oven Pizza and Pasta, is also a builder and said home prices in Pelham Bay have been rising steadily from 3 to 5 percent annually over the past two years. Hunter Island is the opening of the Kazimiroff Nature Trail, dedicated to the memory of Theodore Kazimiroff, historian and naturalist from the Bronx. In 1959, after the Rodman's Neck section of the park was used for various purposes, the New York City Police Department used land from Pelham Bay Park to create the Rodman's Neck shooting range on its southern tip. This park area found within the Bronx is three times larger than Manhattan's Central Park, which occupies just over 840 acres.
Pelham South, which borders Pelham Bay, has a recreational center with a track for jogging, tennis courts, basketball courts, petanque courts, baseball fields, a dog track and an impressive Bronx Victory Memorial. The Friends of Pelham Bay Park advocate for funding to establish a sensory garden (200) and a pond walk (201), which give children of all abilities an opportunity to interact with nature. A lagoon runs through its center and Eastchester Bay separates its southwest corner from the rest of Pelham Bay Park. During America's War of Independence this territory served as a buffer between British-controlled New York City and Westchester in rebel hands. It was also where The Battle of Pell's Point took place. The appointment of Robert Moses as Parks Commissioner shifted Pelham Bay Park's emphasis from promoting natural resources to improving its active recreational potential.
The Thomas Pell Wildlife Sanctuary and Hunter Island Zoology and Marine Geology Sanctuary consist of 489 acres (1.98 km) of swamps and forests within this park. The Siwanoy Trail consists of a trail system that originates from its central forest section. In the 1870s landscape architect Frederick Law Olmsted imagined a green belt that crossed the Bronx formed by parks and avenues that aligned more with its existing geography than with Manhattan's grid system similar to The Commissioners Plan of 1811. This vision has been realized in Pelham Bay Park, which continues to be an important part of Bronx life. Pelham Bay Park is an incredible destination for outdoor enthusiasts looking for an escape from city life. From its stunning shoreline views to its diverse wildlife habitats, this park offers something for everyone. Whether you're looking for a peaceful stroll through nature or an adrenaline-filled adventure on one of its many trails, Pelham Bay Park is sure to provide you with an unforgettable experience.