The Alley Pond Environmental Center (APEC) is getting a temporary home in Oakland Gardens as work on their brand new center begins.
The nonprofit began the moving process this past weekend into 224-75 76th Ave., which will serve as its facilities for the next two years. The temporary center is located at the eastern end of the parking lot near Springfield Boulevard in Alley Pond Park.
NYC Parks is currently working on plans for the APEC building on Northern Boulevard, which will include efficient heating, cooling and electrical systems as well as other updated facilities. Parks also plans to expand the current space, allowing the nonprofit to host more classes and events.
Guests can visit the new center beginning Jan. 2 and the APEC will host a grand opening and open house on Saturday, Jan. 11.
From 11 a.m. to 2 p.m., the center will treat visitors to a day of fun and free activities for all ages. Guests can interact with APEC’s animals, engage in arts and crafts, listen to music and munch on healthy refreshments during the center’s “Welcome to the Neighborhood” celebration.
In 1972, NYC Parks partnered with grassroots organizers to develop APEC following a new understanding of the importance of wetlands. In 1974, the Parks Department created the Wetlands Reclamation Project to rehabilitate the park’s wetlands which had suffered decades of construction dumping and neglect.
APEC moved into its Northern Boulevard location in 1976 and has maintained the same location for over 40 years. Today, the environmental education organization educates children and adults, protects and preserves Alley Pond Park and advocates for sustainable policies and practices.
Its home in Alley Pond Park contains over 635 acres of forests, meadows, ponds and fresh and saltwater marshes. More than 300 species of birds and other wildlife call the park home.
During its transition, APEC employees remind the community that response times may be delayed as they may be without telephone and computer access for a period of time. For updates, visit alleypond.com or APEC’s Facebook, Twitter and Instagram pages.