Monday, July 16, 2007

East River State Park Closing Time Irritates Williamsburg Residents

East River Park Fenced Out

We were in the process of being tossed out of East River State Park in Williamsburg over the weekend, around with 150 or so other people, at the 7:45 PM closing time. It was a beautiful night and most people were not happy about getting the boot about 45 minutes before sunset. Less happy, however, were the people outside the fence (above), who had come to the park only to find that it was closed. (The early closing and the no dogs policy have been sore points with the neighborhood, even though the park is now open seven days a week.)

In any case, we listened in on some of the discussion between the people standing at the gate and the state park employee telling them the park was closed.

Woman: Every time I come here, the park is closed.

Man on Bike: The city cut a stupid deal with the state.

Woman: I've never gotten in here.

Man on Bike: They build million dollar condos and put up this park and no one can come in.

More was said, but we weren't walking around with our notepad, and only jotted down that part of the conversation. We're not sure how the state can leave a major new open space in Williamsburg so understaffed that it needs to shoo people out before sunset on beautiful weekend summer evenings.

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3 Comments:

Anonymous Anonymous said...

The state gets overly zealous with the parks I think. I was told I could not even WALK a bike in one west side state park. NOT EVEN WALK IT! I hope it changes soon!

11:07 AM  
Anonymous citizen said...

if the park staff wasn't so busy telling people that they can't come in, they would have enough staff for people to sit on the grass.

you really need to wonder about a state that builds a park where the only thing built on the site is an eight-foot high fence.

the fourth or july was a disaster! they closed the gates when they reached "capacity" which left the so-called park with lots of open space but the neighboring streets were very crowded.

park rangers cited the "inability to quickly evacuate" the park as the reason that capacity was kept so low. well...if they didn't build the fence we wouldn't have that problem, would we?

with all the commotion, i almost forgot that we were celebrating how free we are in country.

by the way, has state ever wondered about how to quickly evacuate the subways?

11:31 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

this park is such a pain in the ass- but of course i will not stop going since it's the only open air i have access to. saturday they had a hose running across the roadway right when you walk in. the hose has slits in it to spray the grass for watering. it was going across the roadway which is the only way into the park and hosing down the cobblestone and making hard for people to walk by who didnt want to get wet. i had a camera with me so i didnt want to get sprayed. i watched a Ranger stand at the hydrant (and source of said hose) as 5 or 6 people who didnt want to get hosed down dodged the spray. once they passed he promptly shut it off. wtf? they are incredibly rude and total assholes to the patrons of the park. this is only one instance.

4:38 PM  

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