After a Queens park playground appeared to be open for a weekend and then abruptly closed, parents want to know what’s going on.
CBS2’s Jenna DeAngelis went to the city for answers, and spoke to eager Astoria residents.
“Please open the playground soon!” two young boys said.
It’s a plea to the city Parks Department from friends Archer and Arlo, who don’t like seeing the Astoria Park playground closed.
“There’s a lot of stuff to climb,” Arlo Pignataro said.
Arlo got a chance to climb and swing in the park when it was open on July 31.
“Kids were playing, and the sun was shining, so he got to go in the new splash pad, and swing and climb, and it was great. And then the next day I had to tell him that it wasn’t actually open,” said mother Amybeth Whissel.
That’s because the next day, parents like Marianna Scantlebury were asked by Parks staff to leave.
“It was like a mixed message because some of the Parks Department was saying it was unsafe and that there were tests that needed to be done and there were other people saying, oh, it had something to do with the sprinkler system,” Scantlebury said.
A major undertaking to remediate contaminated soil under several baseball and soccer fields in Brooklyn has dragged on for nearly a decade, testing the resolve of a local community still recovering from the devastation of Superstorm Sandy.
And it’s getting worse before getting better: In late July, a chain-linked fence emerged around one of the few remaining open spaces at the Red Hook Recreation Area on Bay Street, sealing off the public for at least the next 18 months.
Until recently, locals and athletes enjoyed the space’s track, basketball and handball courts, and four baseball and three soccer fields — especially after the state’s COVID-19 lockdown order was lifted and outdoor activities resumed last year.
“It’s supposed to be done,” Tony Harrison, 58, a Red Hook resident, said of the park overhaul work.
But, he added, “It’s going on and going on.”
Admin note: I will no longer be referring Bill de Blasio as the mayor of New York City. I don't care how many days he has left. He's abdicated his position and sold out his constituents for the last time and doesn't deserve the title anymore. Like Louis Grossman said the other day, it's time to say no more.