There is no specific date each year that the Washington Square Park Fountain gets turned on although it is typically mid-May. One year more recently it was very much delayed and I believe it didn’t come on until late May or June. But I’d say the median, typical time period is mid-May. With the chance of rain later this week, that might delay it some. My estimate is later this week, if not, the next. (Hopefully, the sometime flooding of the new bathrooms isn’t interfering with the fountain mechanism — the equipment for all is in the basement of the new building.)
The fountain has had problems since it debuted in its new location via the park’s redesign in May 2009. In 2011, two years after it was installed, cracks were discovered in the structure and it went under repair, then, the side plumes didn’t function properly for a long time; finally, they came back on last summer. The fountain was reconstructed from scratch from the original stone as part of Phase I of Washington Square Park’s redesign in which the Bloomberg Administration disassembled it, broke the ground underneath and had it moved 23 feet east to “align” with the Arch at Fifth Avenue.
The fountain had been in its previous location — which was in the very center of the park, on the square’s east-west axis — for 137 years until this decision was made which also involved axing all the healthy and very much alive 40-year old trees that circled it. The Bloomberg Administration tried to pretend it would cost nothing more to make this move – despite the fact that there are numerous water lines underneath the Fountain Plaza! Alas, no one really knows what it did cost – but let’s say it was a lot. (The park’s three phase redesign was budgeted and approved at the onset at $16 million – the costs have escalated to double that, and counting.)
Nonetheless, when the fountain is on and working properly, everyone enjoys it!
Anyone want to throw in a guess of when it might turn on?