If you came of age in New York City during the 2000s, you probably spent some time inside Park, a restaurant and bar on 10th Avenue in Chelsea. The large, two-floor restaurant was converted from an old, 10,000 square foot taxi garage, which we described in 2012 as a “little indoor/outdoor oasis with plants and trees growing inside.” It shuttered suddenly in September of last year, and shortly thereafter it appeared that the building was getting prepared for a demolition. NY1 reported that there were “uprooted trees, mounds of dirt, and empty dining rooms.”
A 10-story building with ground floor retail has been planned to replace the original structure which had been built in 1950, but looking at New York City Department of Building filings, most of the job filings since last October have been disapproved by the agency or withdrawn by the owner. One permit that was successfully issued was for removal of non-load bearing interior walls, ceiling finish, bars and flooring — leaving it to the state it is in today. The delay on approvals and the onset of the coronavirus pandemic has meant that the interior trees and vines which once created for a lush interior on the first floor and canopy on the upper floor is growing naturally, like an urban jungle. The striking view can be seen through the construction barriers on the front facade.
Park Restaurant, when it was still open in 2019
The below are interior photographs of Park from 2012:
The rooftop of Park Restaurant, viewable from the High Line in 2018
Next, check out a guide to Black-owned restaurants throughout the five boroughs.