Camping in New York City

NYC's Floyd Bennett Field could eventually offer 600 public campsites in the city.

As part of the America’s Great Outdoors initiative, Secretary of the Interior Ken Salazar has proposed a series of steps to link local communities, especially young people, with parks and other open spaces in New York City.

In addition to trail and greenway projects, one of those projects is the National Park Service's development of the largest urban park campground in America at Floyd Bennett Field in Brooklyn.

Currently, a small portion of the former airfield contains the only overnight campsite in a park within New York City. Over a two-year period beginning in 2011, the campground will expand from five to 90 sites, including both traditional campsites and RV sites. The campground could ultimately contain 600 sites.

According to a DOI press release, special outreach to underserved communities around the area will introduce families to camping skills and equipment in their home neighborhoods and will facilitate participation in overnight use, complete with campfire programs, kayaking and swimming opportunities.

“One of the major goals of the America’s Great Outdoors initiative is to provide better access to parks and outdoors spaces for the 80 percent of Americans that live in urban areas,” said Will Shafroth, Counselor to the Secretary for America’s Great Outdoors. “This project at Floyd Bennett Field and the larger collaboration between the National Park Service and partners in the New York City area is an example of the great work we can do in cities across America.”

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Robert Rowe
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July 4, 2011 at 6:44 p.m. (EDT)

 I have "camped" in NYC  (I'm from there).   Not at Floyd Bennett Field, however.  Over 20 years ago.

My concern with this initiative, is homeless people.   We shall see ....


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July 4, 2011 at 6:49 p.m. (EDT)

Ooooooh, next up on the list BATTERY PARK !!!! Maybe I can pick up some high-end equipment from the locals there via garbage bag.

In all seriousness though I think it is a good idea. At the same time I hope that it doesn't become a problem(theft, etc.) It may make easy targets of people which in turn will ruin it for everyone else.


Explorer Robby
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July 5, 2011 at 10:37 a.m. (EDT)

It is not something that would interest me personally, but I see where it would be a good idea. I know people in New Orleans that never actually leave the city, am sure that is the case in a city the size of New York. It would be a good opportunity for inner city kids to experience the outdoors in a way they may not have the chance to otherwise. Safety and security will be a valid concern. Hope they can pull it off.

Robert Rowe
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July 5, 2011 at 4:36 p.m. (EDT)

Mayor Bloomberg ... and Guilliani before him ... got things done.  I'm serious.

Previous to that, the regime of Mayor Dinkens was a joke.   People actually had their cars "totaled" by the insurance companies following driving over-and-into potholes the size of manhole covers, and two-feet deep.   The frames broke ... can you believe that? 


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July 5, 2011 at 4:52 p.m. (EDT)

You should see the potholes in Pittsburgh. I am glad I drive a 4wd.

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July 5, 2011 at 5:51 p.m. (EDT)

Robby said exactly what I was thinking as a read the article.  Good for them and I hope that a lot of positive things come out of it.

And, if you had my pack on that campout, you wouldn't worry about theft too much... bear spray! :)

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July 5, 2011 at 9:12 p.m. (EDT)

What? really? your can't be serious.  How in any way, right now, can this be consider this as good or even justified.

With the United States National Debt at $14.5 trillion, yes, trillon. and the Total National Debt approaching $55 trillion, yes trillion

With the state of New York facing a debt of $68 billion,

and NYC basicly breaking even, maybe, or maybe not depending on estimated rev.

In what world is this a wise expenditure of money when as a nation were in is 14 trillion $ in dept and were about to raise the dept limit so we don't (A) go into defalt and (B) lose our bond rating.


So lets see, are they going to charge for these sites?  If not, who's going to pay for this?  If so who gets to use these sites, people with money get to use these sites, not the inner city youth who a least in part some of the ones who should benifiting form this?  Who is this for any way?   How many inner city families have the money to go camping.  Did anyone tell us were in a recession?  My favoriate is the RV camp sites that will be included for the inners city family's that can all afford RV's.  Some one sholud tell them that they can afford RV's because I belive that most "inner city" familey's don't know that they can afford one.  I guess since there building sites for the RV's we can start a national program to buy RV's for the people who are to poor to afford them to fill up the RV spaces.

We can't even take care of the infrastructure we have.  Will some one explain this one to me?

I can't wait till we start funding The National Gerbil Concervation Program,..........because as we all know in the US even gerbil's have rights.

Our country is broke, not only broke, but in debt.  Not only do we have to balance the budget and come out of a recession,  We have to payback over $54 trillion .  Is this the path to take, I think not

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July 6, 2011 at 8:17 a.m. (EDT)

600 camp sites in one spot sort of defeats the purpose of a campground. My advice is to take the train to Harriman and stealth in a hammock.

Robert Rowe
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July 6, 2011 at 8:30 a.m. (EDT)

philipwerner said:

600 camp sites in one spot sort of defeats the purpose of a campground. My advice is to take the train to Harriman and stealth in a hammock.


Or, to Randall's Island.  There is already a park there ....

I understand Ryker's Island is "occupied" at this time.



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July 7, 2011 at 2:12 p.m. (EDT)

Not my cup of tea.  I prefer to have minimal number of campers around.

Robert Rowe
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July 8, 2011 at 7:45 a.m. (EDT)

Yeah ... but, when you're a "local", and don't even have a car ... as most NYC'ers are in that category ... it's not a bad thing.

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