Secret Section of Central Park Closed Since 1930s to Reopen

The Hallett Nature Sanctuary has been fenced off for decades

A four-acre sanctuary in Central Park that's been fenced off since the 1930s will open to the public this summer.

The Hallett Nature Sanctuary, in the lower western portion of the park, is still fenced off but has a new rustic gate and pathways.

The New York Times reports that it will be open for several hours three days a week through June 30 and four days a week from July 1 to Aug. 31.

The opening is part of the Central Park Conservancy's woodlands initiative. Park workers have replaced invasive plants with native species.

Originally called the Promontory, it was renamed Hallett Nature Sanctuary in 1986.

Gardener Alex Hodges led NBC 4 New York through a tour of the four-acre peninsula by the pond Tuesday.

"It really offers views of the park that you've never seen before," he said. 

"It's amazing how you can feel so immersed in nature in one of the busiest parts of the city," he said. 

Conservancy President Douglas Blonsky says it's believed it was closed because Robert Moses wanted to turn it into a bird sanctuary. Moses became parks commissioner in 1934.

Copyright AP - Associated Press
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