From the Times Ledger:
The blueprint for Hunters Point South’s waterfront park was unveiled to the public last Thursday to mostly positive reviews, although plans for an artificial turf common area were met with skepticism.
The 10-acre park is also slated to include dog runs for both large and small canines, a children’s playground, hard-surface ball courts, a canopied pavilion area with staff offices and a concession kitchen, sloped picnic areas, running paths, a raised beach area and a small boat launch at the extreme south end of the park.
The plan now comes up for a vote at next month’s Community Board 2 meeting.
But Long Island City resident Peter Johnson asked if the Parks Department had considered the environmental impact of droppings from the seagulls he believed the turf would attract.
“It’s going to be an area of warmth,” he said, warning that artificial turf cannot absorb and break down the birds’ fecal matter like natural grass. “They’re going to be perching there.”
Charles McKinney, design chief for the Parks Department, said they would have to wash the turf regularly. The agency is switching to turf for active recreation fields because grass is too expensive to maintain in heavily trafficked areas.
Tom Paino, an architect and advocate for controlled development, complimented the Parks Department on the design but also urged the agency to use grass for the common area.
“The new products still produce VOC’s,” he said, referring to the gasses released by the turf materials.
Paino also warned about the heat from the turf being in direct sunlight. “This green, this common space will be unusable during the summer months,” he said.
Question: How do you wash artificial grass? Do you shampoo it like a carpet?