City completes $6.8 million restoration of fountains at Flushing Meadows Corona Park

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Courtesy Daniel Avila/NYC Parks

The Fountain of the Fairs at Flushing Meadows Corona Park has been restored following a $6.8 million upgrade by the city’s Parks Department.

Funded by Mayor Bill de Blasio, the Reflecting Pool surrounding the Unisphere is now an interactive mist garden.

“The Fountain of the Fairs is an iconic symbol of the 1964 World’s Fair that keeps us connected to our city’s rich history,” NYC Parks Commissioner Mitchell J. Silver said. “We’re thrilled to restore vibrancy to this historic site for the enjoyment of New Yorkers and visitors. The revitalized Fountain of the Fairs will continue to serve as a symbol of Queens and a place for peaceful respite for generations to come.”

Specialized jets were installed to create a cooling cloud that will refresh parkgoers on warm summer days. Responsive to community feedback, the pool retains its 1964 imprint with the original design and dimensions. Additional site upgrades include new seating, a drinking fountain, updated plumbing and infrastructure, and new pavement designed to reflect the art deco style of 1930s New York.

“These iconic fountains are known throughout the world as a hallmark of the borough of Queens, and a wonderful attraction where residents can cool off and have fun in the summer,” Councilman Peter Koo said. “Investing in our parks is intrinsically tied to the health and well-being of our communities, and I’m happy to see this significant investment fulfilled right here in Flushing Meadows Corona Park.”

Designed for the 1964 World’s Fair, the Fountain of the Fairs connects the Unisphere to the Fountain of the Planets. In 2000, the fountain was restored after decades of inactivity but later fell into disrepair after sustaining flood damage during Superstorm Sandy. As the site of two World’s Fairs, Flushing Meadows Corona Park has become a recreational escape for the residents of Queens and New York City as well as visitors from around the world.

“I’m grateful for the collective commitment to supporting and beautifying spaces like the Fountain of the Fairs, one of the staples of Queens,” Councilman Francisco Moya said. “Flushing Meadows Corona Park is a place where people from diverse communities from here and around the world gather with family, play soccer, enjoy nature, or meet their life partner like my parents did. Now visitors will count with a restored Fountain of the Fairs as part of their Instagrammable experiences in New York City.”

The Unisphere, which features representations of the continents and celebrates the World’s Fairs theme of “Peace Through Understanding.” The park draws over 3 million visitors from all over the world each year for both spectator and recreational activities.

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