In 1858, the Ridgewood Reservoir was built on the Brooklyn-Queens border to hold the fresh water supply for the once independent City of Brooklyn. The results: an exponential growth of the city’s population, expansion of the water-based beer industry, and, in time, a push for Brooklyn to consolidate with New York City. Today, the site retains elements of its historic use. The three basins, one still filled with water, are part of the 50-acre open space in Highland Park and allow close encounters with nature. NYC H2O, in cooperation with the New York City Department of Parks and Recreation, continues to lead the efforts to protect and restore the native ecology of the Ridgewood Reservoir and its surroundings, and the site is being gradually restored.
NYC H2O, a 10-year-old non-profit, pulls the curtain back on the incredible NYC water supply system so that New Yorkers of all ages can learn about, enjoy and protect their city’s local water ecology. Join Matt Malina, director, and Robin Lynn, his co-curator for the exhibition Ridgewood Reservoir for the 21st Century, at the Queens Museum, to learn the story of the construction, abandonment, and rebirth of Ridgewood Reservoir.
All tours are Eastern Time and last 60 to 90 minutes.