December, 2012


Pols care more about real estate interests than parkland

Major League Soccer has once again demonstrated its lack of transparency and legitimacy in what was supposed to be a public hearing, but was in fact rigged in an attempt to make it appear there was minimal opposition by ensuring that those opposing were kept out of the main auditorium and relegated to a basement area (“MLS pitches Queens stadium,” Dec. 6-12). Comments (1)
Long Island City

LIC’s battered ‘Shady Park’ returns for holiday season

While sections of Andrews Grove in Long Island City remain closed to the public, residents celebrated the reopening of the playground Friday with a Christmas tree and a rededication to making “Shady Park” shady again. Comment

Group rallies against stadium in Flushing Meadows park

A coalition composed of various community, immigrants’ rights and environmental groups marched to Flushing Meadows Corona Park over the weekend to protest three proposed developments they say would deprive the park of its civic nature. Comment
Fresh Meadows

Seniors want more Cunningham Pk center hours

A number of seniors are upset that a facility in Cunningham Park used for socializing has shortened the number of hours it is open and are demanding that the city Parks Department restore the original hours. Comment
Oakland Gardens

Bloomberg visits Alley Pond

Sharmin Derrick grabbed her cellphone to snap a photo when Mayor Michael Bloomberg reached out to shake her hand, thanking her and several other city Parks Department workers who helped clean up after Hurricane Sandy. Comments (1)

Kissena garden looks to future after suicide try

The new leaders of a Flushing community garden held their first meeting last Thursday, months after a 75-year-old man who long ruled the plots went on a hunger strike and threatened self-immolation to prevent his ouster. Comment

Parks must better maintain trees

As Hurricane Sandy pounded our area Oct. 30, our trees, some of which stood for many decades, began to fall due to the high winds. Comments (2)

November, 2012


Parks Dept. must maintain trees better

In the wake of Hurricane Sandy, another important fact is evident: The maintenance of trees lining city streets needs improvement. Comment

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October, 2012


Residents spruce up Doug park as youngsters decorate Halloween pumpkins

The Douglaston Garden Club in conjuction with the Parks Department, the PS98 PTA, the Douglaston National Art League and Marlene’s Studios held a semi-annual cleanup of Catherine Turner Richard Park i Douglaston. The event also featured pumpkin decorating. Comment

Queens second best place to live in city: Survey

When it comes to which New York City borough offers the most for your money, Queens comes in at No. 1, according to a survey. Comment

CB 12 seeks answer to dirt bike dispute

Community Board 12’s third-largest park may just end up being a solution to southeast Queens’ two-wheeled problem. Comments (5)

Flushing Meadows must remain a park for all

In 1895, Frederick Law Olmstead, the genius who created Central and Prospect parks and other famous parks elsewhere, said, “The survival of our park system requires the exclusion from management of real estate dealers and politicians and that the first duty of our park trustees is to hand down from one generation to the next the treasure of scenery which the city placed in their care.” Comments (1)
The Civic Scene

Many greenspaces in CB 8 receiving upgrades, renovations

As required, Community Board 8 representatives met with Queens officials from the city Parks Department in the overlook in Forest Park Sept. 27. There was an update on previously submitted agenda items and a report on other items concerning CB 8. Comment
College Point

EDC project delaying park in College Pt.: Civics

The years-long delay for a College Point road repair is also holding up the construction of a nearby sports facility, according to a neighborhood civic organization. Comment

Tip of the week


Civic weighs park and rail plans

Two groups with opposing plans for the abandoned Rockaway rail line clashed with residents in Woodhaven at a special forum Saturday. Comments (2)

September, 2012

Springfield Gardens

Idlewild center on its way

For years, the Eastern Queens Alliance has operated a makeshift nature center out of a trailer in Springfield Gardens’ Idlewild Park, but all that is set to change as the city Parks Department plans to build a state-of-the-art facility for the group next year. Comment

Gardener tries to end his life in Kissena Pk.

A Flushing senior who has tilled the soil for years threatened to set himself on fire Tuesday to protest new regulations at the Flushing garden he used to help manage. Comment

Woodhaven meeting on Rockaway railbed set

Since 1962 the Rockaway Branch rail line has been inactive and there has been much debate about what will become of it. Comment

Strange relics abound in Astoria Park clean

You never know what you will find on the shores of Astoria Park. Comment
Middle Village

MidVil park spoiled by teenage vandals

A lack of park patrol is turning Juniper Valley Park into a scene of underage drinking, trash and vandalism, according to a Middle Village civic group. Comment

Parks must hire more officers: Vallone

City Councilman Peter Vallone Jr. (D-Astoria) called the city Parks Department’s current policing situation “dangerous” last week, saying the department must hire more parks enforcement patrol officers instead of seasonal staff. Comment

August, 2012

I Sit and Look Out

Parks commissioner leaves city after successful tenure

From the time I was a child when I realized there were seasons, the fall has always been my favorite time of the year. “Autumn in New York,” as the 1934 Vernon Duke song glorifies it, is true. Comment

Parks limits spray showers

Wasting water became a practice of the past at a playground in Glendale. Comment
Kew Gardens

City chops down last Boro Hall trees

The Queens Borough Hall cherry tree massacre produced a sequel last week. Comment

Flushing park path fights heavy flooding

At first glance, the newly opened bike and walking path in the borough’s largest park might seem like just another pedestrian thoroughfare, but the underlying science behind its construction will alleviate chronic flooding along the eastern edge of Meadow Lake. Comment

July, 2012

St. Albans

City teaches boro tree care

The U.S. Center for Disease Control and Prevention recommends adults should drink about 56 glasses of water a week and more when the temperature rises. The city Parks Department recommends that on those same hot, dry summer weeks trees should get up to 20 gallons of water. Comment

Keep Flushing Meadows open for all

When the United States Tennis Association opted to move out of Forest Hills to Flushing Meadows Corona Park, an unprecedented usurpation of public parkland, it promised it would never seek more parkland. That promise had as much credibility as a dead tennis ball, and it thereafter demanded and was given space that almost doubled its presence in the park. Comments (1)

Bidding begins for Little Bay Park

The city Parks Department announced last week it had opened the bidding process for the construction of a comfort station at Little Bay Park, putting an end to years of delays and waiting. Comments (1)

USTA expansion means spoils for Queens park

The United States Tennis Association’s plan to expand its 42-acre facility in Flushing Meadows Corona Park could mean more perks for the borough’s largest green space, although it is unclear whether a state law will require the USTA to foot the bill. Comment
Broad Channel

City and feds will co-manage parks in Jamaica Bay

For decades an invisible line has existed in Jamaica Bay, a line birds and fish passed without notice and one no bureaucrat dared to cross. Comments (1)
College Point

Parks promises kayak launch for MacNeil

The kayak launch at MacNeil Park is on the horizon, the Queens Parks commissioner said at last week’s College Point Civic meeting, meaning residents may soon be able to take to the open waters with their self-propelled vessels. Comments (3)

June, 2012


Lancman: Save church lot

Before the rumbling trucks and diesel fumes moved in, Maspeth was rich with greenery as one of the earliest settlements on geographic Long Island. Comment

USTA stadium plans surprise community

The United States Tennis Association revealed plans for a massive overhaul of its Flushing facilities, surprising the members of the community who are usually kept abreast of major developments in the area. Comment

Estelle Cooper’s park group eyed in missing cash

A nonprofit that funded activities at Flushing Meadows Corona Park is under investigation after more than $100,000 in expenditures could not be accounted for. Comment

May, 2012

College Point

College Pt. baseball field renamed for coach — again

In 1994, a baseball field in College Point was named after Fred Schade, a founder and longtime member of the neighborhood’s Little League, and now the field will bear his name once again for the first time in more than a decade. Comment
Oakland Gardens

Playground poised to reopen after fire

Eight months of waiting will soon come to an end as the new playground in Alley Pond Park rises from the place where ashes once were scattered, according to the city Parks Department. Comment
Forest Hills Gardens

A hidden treasure crumbles under the weight of time

It might seem impossible during this hurried modern era, but there was a time when a Victorian tea party was quite the norm in Forest Hills. Comment
Kew Gardens

Tip of the week

Forest Hills

A tree adoption event grows in Forest Hills park

Forest Hills will host a tree giveaway this week to help the city get a little greener. Comment

Parks says carousel will open by Memorial Day

A long-shuttered feature of Forest Park will spin again. Comment

Officials want Astoria Pool, high-dive restored for plays

It might not be filled with water, but the pool at Astoria Park filled with music Saturday as the city Parks Department organized an event to promote its refurbishment. Comment

Triangle in Elmhurst receives $200K grant

Leaders of the 82nd Street Partnership, a small business improvement organization, were pleased the borough president and mayor’s offices set aside $200,000 to improve the Dunningham Triangle, a vital piece of open space in the dense neighborhood. Comments (1)
Richmond Hill

Forest Park Greenhouse reopens after extensive renovation

A city greenhouse growing flowers to brighten the concrete landscape of Queens is now a state-of-the-art facility after a major overhaul. Comment

April, 2012


Volunteers tidy up Brookville Park for Earth Week

The Friends of Brookville Park employed some dirty techniques Saturday to teach neighborhood youngsters the value of being active stewards of their open spaces in honor of Earth Week. Comment

New park eyed in Jamaica

Shops like Jamaica’s Bellitte Bicycles and ADT Bike & Skate Shop in Richmond Hill buzz with the energy of southeast Queens’ freestyle sport culture, but when BMX riders, skateboarders, in-line skaters and scooter freestylers want to leave those enclaves and put the rubber to the road, they find a less-hospitable environment. Comment
College Point

MacNeil Park overhaul needs to fix sinkholes

The coastal areas of College Point are about to get a face-lift, but the city still plans to perform construction in the isolated neighborhood and then give the accompanying amenities to Douglaston. Comment

March, 2012

Jackson Heights

Garden School play area sold to city for $6M

Although the plan was almost derailed more than a year ago, City Councilman Daniel Dromm (D-Jackson Heights) celebrated with government officials and civic leaders last Thursday the sale of the Garden School’s playground to the city. Comment

Francis Lew Park waits for new play area in May

Northeast Queens commuters might be pulling out their hair over two more years of ongoing construction on the Whitestone Bridge, but for children the important work is nearly complete, thanks to a new playground set to open in early May. Comments (26)
St. Albans

Jamaica teen recognized as city Rising Star

Ask Jamaica teenager Zahra Abd’Allah if it is true she used to be shy, and she will be quick to correct you. Comment

Avella hopes to save Whitestone lot for potential park

The courts have taken the next step in foreclosure proceedings against the owners of a vacant Whitestone property, but a lawmaker hopes to intervene before the lot hits the auction block. Comments (31)
East Elmhurst

PS 127 playground expands its history

Borough President Helen Marshall, East Elmhurst leaders and city Parks Department employees broke ground last Thursday on a renovation of the playground at PS 127. Comment
Jackson Heights

Play street could be plaza

Jackson Heights Green Alliance, a park and open space advocacy group, announced at a town hall meeting Monday the 78th Street Play Street is on track to become a permanent plaza. Comment

February, 2012


CB 7 approves Bowne Park bocce court

At its monthly meeting Monday night, Community Board 7 threw its support behind new construction and renovations of a bocce ball court in Bowne Park. Comments (1)
Bay Terrace

CB 7 to hear women’s center plans for Totten

The Center for the Women of New York has reached an important milestone in its efforts to secure a home in Fort Totten Park, according to founder and Chairwoman Ann Jawin. Comment

January, 2012

Oakland Gardens

Playground at Alley Pond Pk. slated to reopen

The playground in Alley Pond Park, which was damaged by a suspicious fire toward the end of September, will be repaired and open to the public once again by late spring or early summer, according to the city Parks Department. Comment
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