Gotham Gazette

The Place for New York Policy and politics

Department of Parks & Recreation

Department of Parks & Recreation

  • Who’s Responsible for the Rats in Our Tree Beds?

    An Upper West Side tree bed (photo: CM Brewer’s office)


    Rat vigilantes on the Upper West Side are placing exposed rat poison in the tree beds, endangering children and pets. 

    Two Upper West Side dogs, Waffles, a one-year-old rescue coon hound mix, and Beti, a six-year-old terrier mix, are the latest victims; upon ingestion, they were rushed to the vet for treatment and have both since made full recoveries.

    While Upper West Siders have called on local government for a more aggressive

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  • In First Budget, Adams Fails to Fulfill Pledge of 1% for Parks

    Erica Sherman/Brooklyn BP's Office

    Mayor Eric Adams as BK BP (photo: Erica Sherman/Brooklyn BP's Office)


    When he was running for the position and since becoming Mayor, Eric Adams publicly committed to increasing the budget for the Department of Parks and Recreation to 1% of the total city operating budget, which would mean nearly $1 billion annually. But as he presented his first budget plan this past week, an $98.5 billion spending plan for the next fiscal year,

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  • The Silver Parks Doctrine

    silver parks

    Parks Commissioner Silver at a City Council hearing (photo: William Alatriste)


    As New York City Parks Commissioner Mitchell Silver approaches his first anniversary on the job, advocates and officials are still getting to know the new steward of the city's green spaces. One of Silver's more common mantras may help provide a better understanding of his mission, if we can decode it.

    "My goal as commissioner is to make sure our agency culture shifts from one of just maintaining our parks to truly caring for our parks, which

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  • As Warmer Weather Approaches, Safety of City Playgrounds Questioned

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    The Oodle Swing broke at least five kids’ legs two summers ago in a Park Slope playground. Parents rallied, outraged by the apparently botched installation of the large multi-person discus of a swing which was allegedly too close to the ground and trapped the childrens’ legs between the swing and the rubber mat beneath.

    “If any responsible inspection would have been made by an intelligent person working for the City, none of these children would be hurt,” said Robert Kelner of the law firm Kelner & Kelner, who is representing three of the injured children.

    “I think, shame on them if they are not sufficiently

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