This land was acquired by New York City as part of Crotona Park, one of the six original parks in the Bronx established in 1888. Old borough hall was built here in 1897. After World War I, an adjacent parcel of Crotona Park was dubbed Victory Park, and a formal garden with paths radiating from a circular fountain embellished Borough Hall’s setting. In 1899, a grand stairway was constructed along the steep slope connecting Borough Hall to bustling Third Avenue. The new Borough Hall opened in 1935 at the Grand Concourse and 161st Street, and by 1964 the only office left at the old building was the marriage license bureau. Though landmarked in 1965, the building fell into disrepair and was demolished in 1969. The vacated property was landscaped as a passive sitting area with a comfort station, with the historic staircase remaining as the only vestige of its historic past. In 1987, this section of Crotona Park was given an independent identity and name—Highland Park—and after a park renovation, it was renamed Tremont Park in 1999. In 2020, as part of a New York City Parks initiative to expand the representation of African Americans honored in parks, Tremont Park was named for Walter H. Gladwin (1902-1988), the first Black elected government official in the Bronx.
Source: New York City Department of Parks and Recreation
To learn more about the history of Tremont Park, visit NYC Parks' website.