Ivy Hill is a small, neighborhood, urban park that is in great demand because of its proximity to neighborhood high rise apartments, Seton Hall University, and private housing units. Located on Mt. Vernon Place, on the Newark/South Orange border, and adjacent to Seton Hall, this 18.96-acre park is another Olmsted Brothers design.
In 1927 land was secured from the City of Newark for the purpose of meeting the recreational needs of the rapidly growing sections of Maplewood, Newark, South Orange, and Irvington. The original tract of land measured 18.86 acres, which was added to slightly until the final acreage of 18.96 was achieved in 1938. Those first 11 years of Ivy Hill Park saw gradual development and improvements by the Works Progress Administration.
Under the terms of a 1986 agreement with Seton Hall University, the County has a 25-year, no-cost lease for one acre of University property that has 6 tennis courts. This land is contiguous with the park and brings the total number of courts in the park to 10. In exchange, the County rehabilitated the tennis courts and allows Seton Hall University use of the park's facilities. Other improvements included redesign of the field area for football, soccer, baseball, and softball, and improvements to the existing basketball court and playground, along with general site work.
• Installation of rubberized safety surface in the playground
Cost: $101,787 Completed in 2003
• Modernization of three softball/baseball fields and installation of two new basketball courts
Cost: $1,210,102 Completed in 2005
• Development of a community garden dedicated to Natashia Aeriel, Terrance Aeriel, Dashon Harvey and Iofemi Hightower
Cost: $347,000 Completed in 2008
· Renovation of park buildings and upgrades to the pathways, lighting and landscaping
Cost: $753,866 Completed in 2010
· Installation of synthetic surface baseball/softball field
Cost: $724,386 Completed in 2010
· Dedication of the Mike Sheppard Sr. Field
Dedicated in 2012
· Installation of 18-station exercise course
Cost: $198,172 Completed in 2014
· Installation of new pathways and ornamental lighting
Cost: $581,937 Completed in 2014
From New Jersey: Take Route 280 to Garden State Parkway South. Take Exit 144/South Orange Avenue. Turn right onto Myrtle Avenue. Turn right onto 14 th Avenue. Turn left onto Speedway Avenue. Turn left onto South Orange Avenue. Turn left onto Sanford Avenue. Turn right onto Mt. Vernon Place. Park is on the right.
From New York: From New York: George Washington Bridge to Garden State Parkway. Follow above directions. OR Lincoln Tunnel to New Jersey Turnpike South. Take Exit 15W for Route 280 West. Follow above directions.
Use the intersection of “Mt. Vernon Place and Manor Drive” when obtaining driving directions from the Internet.