New York Farm Colony and Sea View

You'll learn about:

  • Historic reuse and landmark preservation

  • Context-sensitive urban design 

  • The intersection of public health and urban planning

  • Master planning

Tour two historic Staten Island sites undergoing major change, thanks to the proactive efforts of the New York City Economic Development Corporation: the New York Farm Colony and Sea View Hospital.

What today is the New York City Farm Colony was originally developed in the 1800s as the Richmond County Poor Farm. The colony, which provided room and board to socially vulnerable populations in exchange for their labor, expanded twice between 1900 and 1940 but has been vacant since 1975. In 2013, the NYCEDC selected a developer to redevelop the site as an age-restricted residential community with new open space, restored native landscapes, restored landmark buildings, and new retail. Visit this work in progress, and hear from the people most involved in its planning and development.

When the Sea View Hospital for Tuberculosis was built, there was no known treatment for this disease. Doctors did know, however, that fresh air, rest, and a nutritious diet had therapeutic effects on TB patients. The city’s public health establishment thus built the country’s largest TB hospital complex, with residential facilities, research laboratories, operating pavilions, auditorium, and even a community farm. Now, a century later, the city is battling a new epidemic—the set of chronic diseases like diabetes and heart disease that are often tied to our environment. Tour this once-abandoned site, set to be transformed into a mixed-use health-focused development that will be known as Sea View Healthy Community.