Wednesday, May 23, 2007

Finally: East River State Park Opens This Weekend

View from Park

On Sunday, as we strolled by East River State Park on Kent Avenue and stared at it for the umpteenth time, we wondered aloud, "When are they going to open?" and explained to a friend that it was supposed to open last year but that it had been delayed. Now, we have....drum roll...the answer: The 7.5 acre park, which is between N. 7th Street and N. 9th Street will open this weekend. Metro has some details as does the WPA Blog, which advises you to "go frolic."

You might remember that it was supposed to be open last year, but that local blogger INSIJS, who has followed the status of the waterfront green space, which occupies part of the site of the former Brooklyn Eastern District Terminal, found officials saying that the sod hadn't taken yet.

Well, yesterday, the state confirmed that the park will be open 10AM through 8PM from Saturday through Memorial Day and that it will be open weekends after that. This is a low-budget park for now: no staff to keep it open weekdays, no furniture whatsoever and only portable toilets.

Some verbiage from the press release announcing the opening:
All the work on grass and plantings at the new State Park in Williamsburg over the past year is really starting to take hold. As a result, though there is still some work to do at the site to open full time, State Parks will be opening the park on a trial basis, during weekends, starting Memorial Day weekend, from 10 AM - 8 PM. A more formal opening will come later in the summer.

To protect the young park through this transitional phase, activities on the site will be largely limited to passive uses including, relaxing, picnicking, enjoying the terrific views and open space. Therefore, State Parks respectfully asks folks to leave their pets, skates and skate boards at home. We ask that bikes be walked through the park and please, no one may go in the water. Comfort facilities are not yet available.

A huge, huge cheer for the opening. We hope that the state park authorities, who tend to rule with a heavy hand, allow the new park to reflect the neighborhood vibe.

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Blogger i'mnotsayin said...

Weekends only??!

Sorry to be ungrateful, but after a yearlong wait for the grass to grow, and two years after the rezone traded open space and height restrictions for "waterfront access", we get a part-time park because the state feels we need a babysitter and can't afford it.

So frustrating.

12:40 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I though I read here or maybe in one of the other BK blogs that the Park site on Kent in Williamsburg is a brownfield how was it that the City was able to put a Park there? When did they do the clean up? Anyone in the neighborhood have the history on the Park site. Its nice to have green grass by the river but NOT if kids are gonna have risk of getting sick.

10:13 AM  
Blogger Unknown said...

I second the comment about weekends only. I work weekends. Until eight o'clock when they kick everybody out of "our" park. The sun is still up at that time in the summer. I used to be able to go down to the water and watch the sun go down behind the city. Not any more. I really wish I had my waterfront back.

8:35 PM  
Blogger Unknown said...

Yeah this is wack, this park needs to be open until at least 9PM so you can watch the sunset. I spent many evenings down at the "secret spot" drinking beers and enjoying the area, now you can't even access it

10:43 PM  

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