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Hope Ballfield

The Daily Plant : Wednesday, September 28, 2005

BUSHWICK BREAKS GROUND ON NEW FIELDS


photo by Malcolm Pinckney

While the sky may have been overcast on Monday, September 26, the forecast was nothing by sunny for Bushwick Fields. Parks & Recreation Commissioner Adrian Benepe joined Brooklyn Borough President Marty Markowitz, Council Member Erik Martin Dilan, State Senator Martin Malave Dilan, and Community Board 4 District Manager Nadine Whitted to break ground on a $1.665 million renovation to the park. The audience was packed with students from the Academy of Urban Planning and the Bushwick School for Social Justice. Once a dust-filled ballfield, this mass of dirt and broken concrete will be converted into a synthetic turf multi-purpose field with a volleyball court, bleachers, handball courts, fencing, a drinking fountain, and new benches.

Take a good look around you," said Commissioner Benepe. "What you see before you today will be unrecognizable in a year’s time. Thanks to Council Member’s Eric Martin Dilan’s generous allocation, Bushwick Fields will be transformed from a dustbowl to a state-of-the-art synthetic turf field."

Parks began utilizing synthetic turf in 1997 and has increased its use of the material under the Bloomberg administration. Benefits of synthetic turf include safety; increased versatility; a reduced need for maintenance; and a decreased environmental impact thanks to the elimination of pesticides, fossil-fuel-powered equipment, and irrigation during droughts. Synthetic turf does not require weekly mowing, watering, fertilizing or seeding; it is useable year-round; and it wears out much more slowly—these differences add up to savings of more than $25,000 per field each year. (In addition to a growing investment in this new technology, Parks continues to upgrade and introduce natural grass fields in appropriate sites.)

This park is named for the surrounding community of Bushwick. In 1638, Dutch settlers purchased the land from the Native American Canarsie tribe. Twenty-two years later, Dutch Director General Peter Stuyvesant established a farming community on the land, naming it "Boswyck," meaning "heavy woods." In 1664, the name was anglicized into "Bushwick." In 1834, the town of Bushwick merged into the City of Brooklyn and in 1898, the City of Brooklyn merged into the City of New York.

 

QUOTATION FOR THE DAY

"There is no such uncertainty as a sure thing."

Robert Burns
(1759–96)

 

 

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