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Tompkins Square Park

The Daily Plant : Thursday, August 20, 2009

Parks Cuts the Ribbon on Improvements to Tompkins Square Park Playground

Neighborhood children enjoy the newly renovated Tompkins Square Park playground. The $1.5 million project installed new play equipment, safety surface, water features, and sandbox.
Photo by Daniel Avila

On August 19, Parks Commissioner Adrian Benepe joined Congress Member Carolyn Maloney, Manhattan Borough President Scott Stringer, City Council Member Rosie Mendez, former NFL running back Tiki Barber, Community Board 3 Parks Committee Chair Richard Ropiak, and kids from Oasis in Downtown Summer Camp to cut the ribbon on $1.5 million in improvements to the playground at Tompkins Square Park. The project was supported by funding allocations of $700,000 by Borough President Stringer, $700,000 by Council Member Mendez and $123,000 by Mayor Bloomberg.

The renovation added an exciting assortment of new play equipment, provided by Kopman, and what is now the East Village’s only sandbox. A new water play area contains a kid-activated array of bubblers and in-ground jets. More benches were installed, interspersed with flowering cherry trees and a series of low tables created from recycled components of the old play equipment. The project also corrected a long-standing drainage problem and added light colored safety surface around the play area. Shrubs and ground covers were planted to better shield the playground from the traffic along Avenue A.

“Thanks to funding allocations from Borough President Scott Stringer, City Council Member Rosie Mendez, and Mayor Bloomberg, the Tompkins Square Park playground has been transformed into an oasis of fun,” said Commissioner Benepe. “Great new play equipment, safety surfacing, a water play area and sandbox are just some of the latest innovations at this popular neighborhood playground.”

“It wasn’t so long ago that our city parks and playgrounds were in serious need of a makeover,” said Manhattan Borough President Scott M. Stringer. “Projects like this one have brought a splash of green to the map of Manhattan. I am proud to join the Parks Department and Commissioner Benepe in welcoming the children of the Lower East Side to their new Tompkins Square Park Playground.”

“Tiki Recreation is proud to work with the NYC Department of Parks on such an important project as the Tompkins Square Park playground restoration,” said former NFL running back Tiki Barber. “We applaud the efforts of Borough President Scott Stringer, Council Member Rosie Mendez, and especially all the community members who worked so hard to see this project through to its completion.”

The Avenue A playground is at the heart of a burgeoning East Village community with a growing number of families with young children. Last reconstructed in 1989, the playground needed refurbishment to serve the thousands of children who use the park weekly. As part of this project, additional work in the park included the correction of fence and gate defects in the other playgrounds on East 7th Street and Avenue B, the planting of four trees and a new drainage system around the base of the Temperance Fountain.


QUOTATION FOR THE DAY

“We are here to add what we can to life, not to get what we can from life.”

William Osler
(1849 – 1919)

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