Happy Halloween In Hippo Playground: Parks Cuts Ribbon On New Play Equipment In Riverside ParkFOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Wednesday, November 1, 2006
Manhattan Borough Commissioner William T. Castro yesterday joined City Council Member Gale Brewer, President of the Riverside Park Fund Jim Dowell, members of The Hippo Playground Project, and a parade of neighborhood children dressed in Halloween costumes to celebrate recent renovations to Riverside Park’s Hippo Playground.
Hippo Playground was upgraded with a more challenging play unit to meet the needs of the community’s children. Parks replaced the existing piece of toddler equipment with a larger play unit to better accommodate the 5-12 year age group that primarily uses the site. New asphalt pavement and safety surface was installed around the new unit, and the existing swing set was repainted.
“The new play unit caters to the recreational and fitness needs of children in this community, with an eye to fun and safety,” said Parks and Recreation Commissioner Adrian Benepe. “Thanks to Mayor Bloomberg and City Council Member Gale Brewer, these children can now delight in a custom-designed playground and continue to flock to this favorite spot in Riverside Park.”
The renovations to Hippo Playground were made possible with $15,000 allocated by Mayor Bloomberg and $236,000 allocated by City Council Member Gale Brewer. The funding package also paid for renovation work at Dinosaur Playground at 97th street in Riverside Park.
The Hippo Playground property on 91st Street was acquired in 1937 as part of the Riverside Park expansion. The playground was built later that year, and was known as the 91st Street Playground until 1993, when the Playground Project raised $120,000 to fund the construction of hippopotamus art in the middle of the playground, and the playground was most appropriately renamed.
Over the past five years, Parks & Recreation has spent more than $152 million for Manhattan park improvements, including new waterfront parks, bike paths, and greenways. Currently, Parks is in the midst of a major initiative to improve parks throughout Manhattan, with 42 projects costing $187 million under construction, and another 53 projects costing $41 million currently in design or procurement.
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