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Putting the ‘fun’ in functional: Playground built to combat flooding opens at Slope school

Play day: From left, Department of Environmental Protection Commissioner Vincent Sapienza, Brooklyn Parks Commissioner Marty Maher, and Park Slope Councilman Brad Lander joined PS 282 faculty and students to cut the ribbon at the grand opening of the learning house’s new playground.
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This playground is truly a green space!

Local pols and city sewage honchos on Monday snipped a ribbon to open a Park Slope elementary school’s new playground, which they said will provide students hours of entertainment — and prevent flooding.

“The new green infrastructure is not only absorbing storm water and helping to improve the health of our surrounding bodies of water, it is also providing a fun, safe place to play,” said Department of Environmental Protection Commissioner Vincent Sapienza.

The facility behind Sixth Avenue’s PS 282 is equipped with a drainage system built to annually suck up 1-million gallons of storm water that would otherwise spill into the city’s combined-sewage-overflow system, which during heavy precipitation dumps rainwater, along with liquid waste flushed down local toilets, into the nearby Gowanus Canal — a Superfund site tainted with sexually transmitted diseases, poo, and other filth, where the Feds are years into a cleanup project that requires the installation of two multi-million-gallon storage tanks that will hold future storm-water runoff not absorbed beneath the playground.

Most visitors to the new fun zone between Lincoln and Berkley places, however, will hardly notice its vaunted drainage infrastructure, which is really nothing more than a collection of crushed rocks and perforated pipes lurking just below the playground’s synthetic-turf-covered surface.

Instead, visitors’ attention will likely be captured by the recreation space’s new above-ground amenities, which in addition to the turf field include a track, benches, a basketball court, and a spray fountain, as well as various new trees and other freshly planted green things.

The new facility — which workers started constructing in July to replace the school’s previous blacktop playground — received $350,000 in funding from the Environmental Protection Department, with Park Slope Councilman Brad Lander chipping in another $250,000 to build the space, which the pol described as a huge improvement over the old asphalt.

“I’m thrilled that a new green playground has now opened to finally replace the lot,” Lander said.

Reach reporter Colin Mixson at cmixson@cnglocal.com or by calling (718) 260-4505.
Posted 12:00 am, October 24, 2018
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