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New Yonkers Public Space Welcomes Visitors To Saw Mill River

A sign welcomes visitors to the Daylighting at Mill Street, a public courtyard at the Saw Mill River in Yonkers.
A sign welcomes visitors to the Daylighting at Mill Street, a public courtyard at the Saw Mill River in Yonkers. Photo Credit: Contributed

YONKERS, N.Y. -- Passers-by on Mill Street in Yonkers may want to linger now that Phase II of Daylighting of the Saw Mill River at the location has officially begun.

Mayor Mike Spano officiated at the opening Thursday of a 100-foot portion of the river where 20,000 square feet of open public courtyard space has been newly constructed.

The rehabilitation project will include adjacent buildings and properties.

“The Daylighting of the Saw Mill River has provided a tremendous boost to Yonkers’ economy, helping to spur economic development, create jobs and bring new businesses to our downtown,” said Spano.

“With the continuation of the daylighting at Mill Street, we are providing an open urban civic space that provides residents and visitors greater access to our waterfront district and revitalizing city.”

The courtyard transformation is likened to a European plaza, said the release. There is a pedestrian and vehicular bridge, and a new pedestrian gateway that will provide access from the Saw Mill River daylighting at Van Der Donck Park and public artwork.

Artwork includes a three-story mural (‘Wildfire’) painted by a Dutch artist Eelco Van Den Berg, which is his largest mural yet in the United States as well as a mirrored glass pole (‘As We Reflect’) created by Haifa Bint Kadi of Groundwork Hudson Valley, which is described to reflect the diversity of Yonkers.

In addition, there is a millstone that was uncovered during construction and is believed to date back 150 years, when the old Yonkers Flouring Mill was once housed there.

The $8 million project is funded in part by the Environmental Facilities Corp. Green Innovation Grant and Empire State Development’s Saw Mill Acquisition Grant. Edgewater Design, LLC. and PS&S designed and engineered the project.

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