It took six years for the Vanderbilts to build the Biltmore Estate — now Windsor Terrace residents are hoping it doesn’t take that long to finish renovations of the Prospect Park playground that bears the family’s name.
The opening of the Vanderbilt Playground at Vanderbilt Street and Prospect Park Southwest, scheduled for Sept. 14, has been delayed indefinitely — disappointing locals who had hoped to take advantage of the upgraded space with the heatwave still simmering.
“We were really excited to have a nice addition to our part of the park — and just in time for us to use it this summer!” said Amy Sandgrund, who had dreamt of taking her 3- and 6-year old kids to the playground. “By the time it opens, it’ll be cold — and certainly the sprinklers won’t be on!” The Vanderbilt Street playground has been closed since last August, and is one of the most popular play areas for tots around Windsor Terrace.
Prospect Park spokesman Eugene Patron attributed delays in the completion of the project to the contractor in charge.
“Two of the subcontractors on the job were changed,” said Patron. “Getting the new subcontractors lined [up] to work with the primary one pushed back finishing the project.”
Patron added that there is no date when the playground will open.
Still, young parkgoers will have plenty of new attractions to enjoy whenever the playground does finally open.
The playground will feature two separate areas — one for toddlers, and the other for older kids — along with multiple sprinklers, a new jungle gym, swings and more.
Community Board 7 District Manager Jeremy Laufer said he had received perhaps 20 inquiries from locals asking when the new playground would open.
“We’re all pleased they’re doing the work, but I’m disappointed that there is a delay,” said Laufer.
Sandgrund was less diplomatic.
“A lot of people have been trying to get an answer — I wish they’d been more transparent from the beginning about what was going on,” she said. “They said, ‘It’s going to open next week, then next week — now I feel like it’s totally up in the air when they’ll be done!”
©2010 Community News Group
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