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Central Park Reconstruction Plans for the Tots Playground

WHEREAS, The Central Park Tots Playground is located inside Central Park between 67th and 68th Streets near Central Park West; and

WHEREAS, The project is part of the Central Park Conservancy's plan to raise each of Central Park's playgrounds to a standard of excellent as outlined in a detailed plan "for rebuilding managing Central Park's playgrounds;" and

WHEREAS, The Tots Playground was constructed in 1956 was the last created during the administration of Robert Moses as the solution to a long dispute with the neighborhood concerning the use of this space just north of Tavern on the Green; and

WHEREAS, The playground, which was just 1/3 the size of typical Central Park playgrounds, was renovated in 1968 based on a design by Richard Dattner, who also redesigned the adjacent "Adventure Playground" in 1966; and

WHEREAS, The playground was renovated in 1987; and

WHEREAS, The area surrounding the playground was renovated in 1996 to remove redundant pathways and reconfigure paths to better integrate with the landscape and add plantings; and

WHEREAS, The Tots Playground is located in a busy area and closely bordered by paths connecting to various Central Park destinations; and

WHEREAS, The equipment in Tots Playground is over 20 years old and its features are worn and outdated; and

WHEREAS, The proximity of Tots Playground to the Adventure Playground permits the features to focus on those particularly well-suited to toddlers, including small-scaled equipment; and

WHEREAS, The playground is used heavily; and

WHEREAS, The goals of the reconstruction are to improve the relationship of the playground to Central Park by addressing site lines, circulation and landscape; to enhance the relationship between the two playgrounds; and to improve the playground experience by young users; and

WHEREAS, The reconstruction encompasses modification of the playground's footprint from rectilinear to a circular shape, which will better recede from view when observed in the Park; and

WHEREAS, It further includes a variety of new play equipment and the introduction of a water feature; and

WHEREAS, The reconstruction also includes a low seat wall with a fence that weaves through landscape plantings for security, accessible park paths, and supplemental plantings for a strengthened relationship between the playground and the park; therefore, be it

RESOLVED, Community Board Five recommends approval of the plan for reconstruction of the Tots Playground located inside Central Park between 67th and 68th Streets near Central Park West.

The above resolution passed by a vote of 29 in favor; 1 opposed; 1 abstaining.

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