Holiday Weekend Bonus: New Section of East River Promenade Opens

Looking north from Grand Street

A new haven awaits pedestrians, picnickers, cyclists and sunbathers this Fourth of July weekend along the East River, where the new and improved riverfront promenade is (finally!) open for business all the way south to Grand Street.

New tables and benches await visitors just north of the Williamsburg Bridge.

The wide paved esplanade dotted with benches and landscaped gardens now extends south from 14th Street to the popular water-sprinkler playground featuring sculpted seals that sits just opposite the East River Co-op at Grand and the FDR.

Friday afternoon, a few cyclists and fishermen enjoyed the nice wide paved path and comfortable benches under sunny skies, while the smell of fresh mulch from brand-new landscaping blew on the cool breeze.

Two pedestrian bridges are not yet complete.

There is still plenty of work to be done on the $80 million project, including the bridges that carry the path out over the water in several places, which are still not complete.

But for LES residents who’ve long anticipated the park improvements, it’s a welcome start to a summer holiday weekend. Now, if only Macy’s would move their fireworks back over to the East River side of the island . . .