Kings Park Psych Center

Kings Park Psychiatric Center, before and after

Kings Park Psychiatric Center, before and after (Credit: Julie Cappiello)

Drag the sliders on the images below to see how Kings Park Psychiatric Center has changed since its closure in 1996. Home to thousands of patients throughout the years, Kings Park Psychiatric Center was once a self-sustainable town, with patients completing chores, including farming and building, as part of their therapy. If you're viewing this on a tablet, tap on the image to see the transformation.

Building 93

Then: One of the largest buildings and one of the first visible as one entered the complex was Building 93. The structure housed thousands of patients over the years and was one of the most well known of all the buildings on the site. The upper floors housed patients who were less mobile, so the day rooms on each floor were smaller than those below. The left and right wings were used as dormitories. Now: Building 93 stands marred with graffiti, broken windows and padlocked doors. Its fate remains unknown, with some locals hoping for repurposing, and others for demolition.

Photo credit: De Bear (Oct. 16, 1991) / Julie Cappiello (July 27, 2012)

before after

Building 93

Then: The fate of Building 93 had yet to be determined when the state shuttered the hospital. Now: Building 93 is the tallest structure in the Kings Park Psychiatric Center complex, with 11 floors, a two-story attic, a basement and sub-basement. During the years of abandonment, the ground near Building 93 sank, creating a steep hill and lowering the structure significantly.

Photo credit: Dick Kraus (April 12, 1985) / Julie Cappiello (July 27, 2012)

before after

Building 93

Then: Building 93 appeared ominous as it stood at Kings Park Psychiatric Center. The building, the tallest and most famous in the hospital complex, housed thousands of patients during its 110 years in operation. Now: Building 93, once the tallest building on Long Island, looms abandoned over the trees. One of the most famous structures in Suffolk County, it is also the most trespassed and vandalized, with graffiti visible on both of the top balconies.

Photo credit: Don Jacobson (Dec. 5, 1991) / Julie Cappiello (July 27, 2012)

before after

Building 7

Then: Building 7, the Acute Medical Center, served multiple purposes, housing a morgue, hydrotherapy facilities, and surgical and medical units. One of the last structures built on the property, it stood the second tallest, just inches shorter than Building 93. Now: The property surrounding Building 7 includes a bridge that was used for transporting patients to the Buckman Rehabilitation Center. The bridge is covered with overgrown vegetatation, and the parking lot, permanently empty, is a mess of broken concrete and weeds.

Photo credit: Dick Kraus (April 12, 1985 )/ Julie Cappiello (July 27, 2012)

before after

Building 93

Then: A swing sat idly in front of Building 93 at Kings Park State Hospital. By 1991, many floors were abandoned, and the building was in need of repair, but patients continued to occupy the first four floors. Now: The swing that once sat in front of Building 93 has been removed, and 20 years of tree growth now hides much of the building.

Photo credit: Don Jacobson (Dec. 5, 1991) / Julie Cappiello (July 27, 2012)

1974 2014

Building 23

Then: Patients in the Buckman Rehabilitation Center, also known as Building 23, had access to recreational activities, including a pool, weight room, bowling alley and auditorium. Plays were performed by patients for staff and family members. Now: Before its demolition in 2013, the Buckman Rehabilitation Center was covered with overgrown bushes and fields.

Photo Credit: Dick Kraus (April 12,1985) / Julie Cappiello (July 27, 2012)

before after

Building 15

Then: In 1985, Building 15 at Kings Park State Hospital was a contemporary care unit. Behind it loomed the towering Building 93, which was mostly abandoned at the time, with only the first four floors still in use. Now: The paths that once led to Building 15 are hidden by overgrown vegetation. Trees now block an entire wing of Building 15 and the remaining view of Building 93, which has sunk significantly.

Photo credit: Dick Kraus (April 12, 1985) / Julie Cappiello (July 27, 2012)

before after

Building 93

Then: Because of its massive size and gothic architecture, Building 93 was one of the most famous buildings in Suffolk County. It housed thousands of patients from 1886 until it was shuttered in 1996. Now: The trees in front of Building 93 have grown over the years, making it impossible to view the entire face of the building from up close. Building 93 is the tallest on the property, just inches taller than the Acute Medical Center, or Building 7.

Photo credit: Rob Tannenbaum (Oct. 12, 1993) / Julie Cappiello (July 27, 2012)

before after

Building 93

Then: By the mid-to-late 1970s, Kings Park Psychiatric Center's Building 93 was mostly abandoned, with only the first four floors in use. Before that, less-mobile patients were housed on higher floors, where the smaller day rooms protruded from the building. These day rooms were used for reading, watching scenery, playing board games and other recreational activities. Now: The structure still looms over the complex, showcasing broken windows, missing shingles and graffiti on both the front and back balconies. The building appeared in Lucy Weiner's 2011 documentary "Kings Park: Stories from An American Mental Institution" and Daniel Robert Cohn's 1995 film "Eyes Beyond Seeing."

Photo credit: Dick Kraus (April 12, 1985) / Julie Cappiello (July 27, 2012)

before after
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