Eternal Light Monument Opening
The Eternal Light Flagstaff is located inside Madison Square Park facing Broadway at 24th Street. The monument was dedicated on Armistice Day, November 11, 1923 to commemorate the return of the victorious United States forces from the First World War. The Eternal Light Flagstaff is the location of the wreath-laying ceremony, Taps and 21-gun salute, which commences New York’s annual Veterans Day Parade – the largest celebration of service in the nation. The United Veterans Council produces the parade.
On March 15, 2018, Madison Square Park Conservancy began the Landscape Renovation Project to improve the area surrounding the Eternal Light Flagstaff as well as offer a 360 degree view of the monument. The Landscape Renovation Project included removing fencing around the monument base, constructing a new plaza, installing new gardens, fencing, and benches around the plaza. This renovation in partnership with UWVC and the NYC Department of Parks & Recreation was made possible by a generous grant from New York Life Insurance Company.
The renovation achieved the important objective of providing this historic monument the prominent setting it deserves. It also showcased design principles championed by Commissioner Mitchell Silver’s Park Without Borders initiative, which opens up park edges and creates inviting entrances, completing the Department of Transportation’s effort to enhance pedestrian circulation and safety around the public plazas at the intersection of Broadway and Fifth Avenue by directly aligning the new Park entrance with the 24th Street crossing.
The Eternal Light Memorial flagstaff reconstruction was made possible by generous support from New York Life, Manhattan Borough President Gale A. Brewer, The New York City Council; Councilman Corey Johnson, Councilman Keith Powers, Councilwoman Carlina Rivera, Former Councilman Dan Garodnick, and Former Councilwoman Rosie Mendez. Special thanks to Duggal Visual Solutions, Lichten Craig Architects, The United War Veterans Council, and The New York City Department of Parks & Recreation. In memory of John J. Kearney and Phillip T. Davidson.
After about 7 months of renovations, the Eternal Light Memorial Flagstaff formal opening is taking place on October 15, 2018. Madison Square Park Conservancy is happy to have completed the new plaza in time for the 100th anniversary of Armistice Day.