Thursday, May 3, 2012

No Relief In Sight For Abandoned Claremont Community Park

Claremont Community Park has been abandoned for more than four years with no relief in sight. The playground, located on Park Avenue and Claremont Pkwy (near E. 171st Street) includes play equipment, safety surfacing and a small track. The park's renovation in 2001 was organized by City Spaces, a program of the Trust for Public Land. The majority of the $280,000 funding came from the New York Life. Additional funds were donated by the Charles Hayden Foundation, The Horace W. Goldsmith Foundation and the Levitt Foundation. According to the Parks Department's website, "This South Bronx park serves as a valuable educational resource and community center." (Photos: Geoffrey Croft/NYC Park Advocates)


There are concerns over a shut down public park in the Bronx that received hundreds of thousands of dollars in renovation money a decade ago.

The Trust for Public Land poured more than $200,000 into Claremont Community Park back in 2001. The money was earmarked for new playground equipment and to spruce up the space, but now the park is closed, according to WABC News.

Locked gates and warning signs have greeted the residents in this South Bronx community for years.

The park, at the intersection of Park Avenue and Claremont Parkway, has gone from asset to eyesore. It is plagued by sinkholes and uneven pavement that make it unsafe for children.

Residents are not happy.

"It's not being used at all," resident Steve Isaac said. "It's just here. It's like a rat hole...I wish they would do something with it, clean it up, make the community look a little better."

Large sink holes and growth interrupt the playground's small track.

NYC Park Advocates is a not-for-profit watchdog group that monitors funding for park projects and the conditions of the city's green space.

"The money should be allocated to fix this," the group's Geoffrey Croft said. "If the Trust for Public Land is going to be in partnership with the city, building playgrounds, they should be responsible for fixing them and making sure they're open and not just walking away. So we'd like them and the city to raise the funds to fix this."

Large sinkholes are present throughout the park including near the playground and the artificial turf field. (below)

The parks department released the following statement: "Little Claremont Park is in need of major repair and has been closed until funding is allocated. We look forward to returning this wonderful amenity to the community as soon as possible.

The artificial turf field is also plagued by sinkholes.

The parks department also points out that Crotona Park is three blocks away and Claremont Park is two blocks away. The Trust for Public Land says their involvement in the renovation was limited to funding the project 12 years ago, and that the park was built according to parks department specifications.

A dangerous sidewalk on the outside of the park is an accident waiting to happen.

Read/View More

WABC News - May 2, 2012 - By Lisa Colagrossi

A Walk In The Park - August 31, 2010

1 comment:

  1. trust for public land, raising millions saying they are helping the poor and the environment, yet here it is in plain site their methodology, wonder hom much money they kept off this and all the photos in the fundraising packages they included of the grand opening of this eyesore