The Belleville Park is a mid-sized, 32.70-acre park of wooded greenery bordered by Belleville and Parkside Avenues and Mill Street along the Second River, which was once a part of the Morris Canal. The park forms an extension of Branch Brook Park, creating a continuous green strip over 2½ miles long. Some of Branch Brook's famous "Cherry Blossom Land" overflows into this park. Also adjacent to the park is Hendricks Field Golf Course, extending the green landscape further northward.
This park contains a segment of the 36-mile Lenape Trail, a unique urban/suburban trail connecting 18 parks and 11 municipalities in Essex County. A guide to the trail, including comprehensive trail maps, has been written by the New York-New Jersey Trail Conference in close collaboration with the Essex County Essex County Dept. of Parks, Recreation & Cultural Affairs and can be found here.
Belleville Park is a mid-sized, 32.70-acre park of wooded greenery bordered by Belleville and Parkside Avenues and Mill Street along the Second River, which was once a part of the Morris Canal.
The land was acquired in 1915 and construction completed in 1922—the delay owing to the difficulty of obtaining labor during the war. The park was designed by the Olmsted Brothers firm and even today retains some of the original landscaping in its sweeping lawns and winding paths. Coniferous trees divide the park into sections and isolate it from the city streets. Its semi-formal character is derived from plantings of native, rare, and ornamental trees and shrubs. Open fields provide feeding habitats for small mammals and migratory birds. In 1917, to aid in the war effort, these fields were planted with corn.
The park represents an early example of urban rehabilitation, as there are a number of former industrial sites within its boundaries. A shallow depression by the south side of the park represents all that is left of an old rock quarry.