By Bob Harris
Half a dozen members of the Parks Committee of Community Board 8 recently attended a consultation meeting with the officials of the Queens Department of Parks and Recreation in the Overlook in Forest Park.
Each community board meets with Queens parks to receive a report and ask questions.
Expense and Capital items were discussed.
Parks told of the multiple tree stump removals, dead tree removals and pruning of trees in Community Board 8.
They talked of paving areas of the Long Island Motor Parkway, rehabilitating the 193rd Street playground which is north of Union Turnpike near Aberdeen Road, erosion control and landscaping around the core area of Cunningham Park, doing additional plantings, lighting and asphalt needed at PS 165 at Vleigh Place.
Future projects discussed were relandscaping Hoover/Manton Playground slopes facing Queens Boulevard and Main Street, refurbishing landscaping at Haym Solomon Triangle, building an environmental center in Natural Area of Flushing Meadows Corona Park with additional bathrooms near ball fields in southern section of the park, upgrading the handball court, playground equipment and sprinkler system of the PS 26 (Farm Playground), and rehabilitating and adding play equipment at Abe Wolfson Triangle. There was also discussion of needing equipment such as an artificial turf groomer, a crew cab pickup truck, an eight cubic yard mini packer truck, and a gater and a 16 cubic yard packer truck.
Other items discussed included: contract to upgrade the eroded slopes of Captain Tilly Park and perhaps work on the aeration system of goose pond is going forward with anticipated construction fall 2014 (City Council); a contractor has been selected for the shoreline restoration along portions of Meadows Lake expected spring 2015; at Judge Moses Weinstein Playground, removing and replacing safety surface and reconstruction of portions of chain link fence are pending with expected construction spring 2015; reconstruction of multi-purpose play area of Holy Cow Playground with the addition of a safety surface for the swing area with construction fall 2014 (borough president); reconstruction and pavement of stairs on south portico of senior/summer camp building in center of Cunningham Park fall 2014 (mayoral).
In addition, currently in design is the Flushing Meadows Corona Park Northeast Promenade/Roadway and waiting for approval of DEC/Army Corps fall 2015 (mayoral) and Captain Tilly Phase II entry plaza upgrade and plantings Winter 2014-15 (City Council).
Future projects include: upgrade Utopia Playground with spray shower, new benches (borough president); upgrade Briarwood Playground (borough president); Willow Lake Nature Center is underfunded (City Council).
Through Participatory Budgeting in City Council District 23 money was earmarked for Music Stage and Fitness Equipment in the core area of Cunningham Park.
There is also the desire to upgrade the Walking Oval (borough president) and upgrade the Picnic Area (City Council). Parks is combining the funding of all four projects.
Watch for scoping meeting to be scheduled. You can testify if you desire.
The park officials indicated that they would welcome volunteers, of all ages, who wished to volunteer in the parks.
During the summer in Cunningham Park there was a World harmony Day when hundreds of students from dozens of day camps came to the park to play, eat, and have fun.
The day camp in the community building near the flag pole had 40 children during the summer.
Our parks are certainly well used.