The reservoir's historic structures & ecosystems are an opportunity to create a unique environmental education center for our children & their future.

Monday, August 20, 2007

Article and reservoir survey

The following excerpt is from an article in the New York Daily News:

Field of green for 2 parks - Help sought on how to spend 80M at former reservoir, beach

By Brendan Brosh
Daily News Writer

Monday, August 20th 2007, 4:00 AM

Two Queens parks have been slated to receive more than $80million for major overhauls, and city officials want parkgoers to weigh in - quickly - on how that money should be spent.

Highland Park, on the Queens-Brooklyn border, and Far Rockaway will be revamped as part of Mayor Bloomberg's PlaNYC initiative - part of which seeks to improve underdeveloped parks. [...]

Highland Park, just south of the Jackie Robinson Parkway, will receive $46 million.

The 50-acre park is the site of the former Ridgewood Reservoir, which was an active water source until 1959 and served as a backup reservoir for Brooklyn and Queens until 1989.

Parkgoers applauded the influx of money, but previous community meetings have shown a preference for keeping Highland Park more for passive recreation.

"We totally reject the idea that the Ridgewood Reservoir should be turned into a conventional park," said Paul Kerzner, president of the Ridgewood Property Owners and Civic Association. "It should be a natural preserve with more parking, comfort stations and an area for model boating like in Central Park."

"Migratory birds have been using the site for at least 30 years," Kerzner added. "This is their Holiday Inn. Why take it away from them?"

The deadline for submitting the survey is Aug. 31.

I urge anyone concerned with our urban green spaces and the welfare of migratory birds passing through NYC to take a brief moment to fill in and submit the survey at the following link:

PlaNYC Parks Survey : Highland Park

The Department of Parks and Recreation held two community meetings for input from residents of the surrounding areas. You can read summaries of those sessions here and here.

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