History: In 1907 the City of New York acquired the property that is now Kissena
Park. Drawings and photographs prior to 1943 show Kissena Lake as a natural lake with an artesian well and flow from a stream
under 164th Street. In the 1980,s, the stream from under 164th Street was diverted to the trunk storm sewer line. There was
also a stream outflow on the opposite side of the lake. This open natural channel led through Kissena Corridor and into Flushing
In 1943 the WPA constructed the lake with the weir at the stream outflow, the boathouse and the adjacent landscape
as we know it today. An underground spring (artesian well) which formerly fed Kissena Lake from the southwest was diverted.
The northern corner of the lake was filled and converted to a playground.
Also in 1943, a 6" water main was installed adjacent to the boathouse to feed the lake with city water. This
main flows continuously. Other than storm water and underwater springs this appears to be the only source of water. In the
1980's, NYC DEP started adding Calcium Ortho Phosphate to the city water.
The trunk storm sewer line (10' x 16') running east/west through the park was constructed in 1948 along the
LIRR Creedmore Branch right-of-way. About 900 feet west of the weir a hole was broken (about 2'-6" x 2'-6") into the side
of the pipe for the runoff from the lake to go into.
In 1982 the perimeter path and lake were reconstructed. At that time the paths were repaved with asphalt and
the lake was dredged and the bottom evened out to a consistent 4'-0" depth.
In 1998 the pipe and headwall from the weir on the lake were reconstructed.
Schedule: The project is currently in the bid cycle and we expect construction to start May 2002.