From The New York Shitty Inbox: On The Subject Of Greenpoint Parks

In the last 24— no, make that 12 hours— I have received not one, not two, but five Parks-related inquiries. For the sake of simplicity I am consolidating them in this post. Without further ado, here we go!

A chap we’ll call “C” writes:

hey heather
who’s responsible for the park at the end of manhattan ave? they haven’t emptied the trash in a while and it’s getting messy up there

I hear the pool is awesome! have you been?

Before I proceed to my answer I would like to share what I saw with my own eyes today at this precious piece of public space in north ‘Point.

Among the assorted rubbish you just saw, gentle readers, were:

  • A “weewee” pad (used)
  • Fireworks (which are illegal in New York City)
  • Empty beer and liquor bottles (alcohol consumption is prohibited in our public spaces)
  • A great many fast food/take out containers

The lattermost I suspect are the reason rats have been spotted here recently. (NOTE: C is not the only person who has complained to me about the filthy conditions at this park.). They, as well as their winged comrades (pigeons) and raccoons (which do inhabit the area) LOVE this stuff! The previous having been written:

I have yet to make it to the pool, C— although I have heard it is rather nice. What’s more, it is interesting that you bring the subject up. You see, our Parks Supervisor has allocated a great deal of her attention and manpower towards the opening of the McCarren Park Pool. In fact, one person counted around thirty Parks employees sprucing up the area in anticipation of our fair Mayor’s visit today. Not being terribly adept at multitasking, our Parks Supervisor seems to have overlooked/forgotten about the Manhattan Avenue Kayak Launch (This its proper name, so please take note. This will come in handy shortly.).

How do I bring this matter to the attention of the proper authorities?

you ask? Well, this is where it gets interesting! You see, “C”, north Brooklyn has been graced with a very special public private partnership. As a result, our Parks Supervisor (a New York City employee) is also the Executive Director of our local Parks Conservancy/watchdog group: Open Space Alliance North Brooklyn. This strikes yours truly as being tantamount to entrusting the fox to guard the hen house but a number of people find this not only arrangement acceptable, but desirable. But I digress.

What you need to do first is call 311 and complain! At the end of the call you will be assigned a complaint number. Write this down. Last step: write an email outlining the nature of the complaint, with the complaint number you were issued by 311 and send it to:

Stephanie Thayer, Administrator for North Brooklyn Parks – NYC Dept. of Parks & Recreation/Executive Director – Open Space Alliance for North Brooklyn (OSA):  Stephanie.Thayer@parks.nyc.gov

NOTE: While Ms. Thayer supervises all parks located in Community Board 1, Community Board 1 will NOT field complaints about our parks. They will simply forward them to Open Space Alliance North Brooklyn (of which, as you will recall, Ms. Thayer is also the Executive Director). With that option off the proverbial tables, here are a few folks you should copy on the aforementioned email:

Kevin Jeffrey, NYC Brooklyn Parks Borough Commissioner: Kevin.Jeffrey@parks.nyc.gov
Steve Levin, City Councilman 34th District: slevin@council.nyc.gov

And last— but hardly least— Assemblyman Joe Lentol (whose constituent services are TOPS)! Mr. Lentol has a handy online contact form which can be accessed here.

TIP: Be sure to emphasize the Kayak Launch’s present conditions are conducive to harboring vermin and that criminal activity is being practiced/has come to pass there. It has been my observation these things tend to get attention. NEXT QUESTION!

A person we’ll call “A” writes:

howdy heather. hope you are enjoying this lovely summer. i am emailing to see if you happen to have the lowdown on transmitter park. i am curious as to when it opens.

I have been asked this (excellent) question by three people. Per someone in the know, I have learned that while the pier will not be ready until this fall, the plan is to open the park  in June or July (so eager Greenpointers can legally enjoy it). Obviously this has yet to happen. My advice, send an email to above-listed civil servants and elected officials and demand an answer!

I hope this post has been helpful and informative, A and C. Please keep me updated on what happens!

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