Nolita Playground Could Get Zip Line, Climbing Wall in $1.9M Renovation

By Andrea Swalec on August 27, 2013 6:59am 

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 The rundown playground at Spring and Mulberry streets will get a $1.9 million renovation, the group boosting the work said Aug. 26, 2013.
DeSalvio Playground Set for Renovations
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MANHATTAN — A rundown Nolita playground is finally getting an upgrade, with all-new play equipment that could include a zip line, a climbing wall and new sprinklers.

DeSalvio Playground at the corner of Spring and Mulberry streets will get a $1.9 million overhaul with money from Manhattan Borough President Scott Stringer, City Council Speaker Christine Quinn and City Councilwoman Margaret Chin, the founder of booster group Friends of DeSalvio Playground said Monday.

"It's going to be a nicer place to be," said Kristi Avram, founder of the group.

The friends group, the Downtown parenting nonprofit Bowery Babes and other parent groups had previously secured $1.3 million from the three representatives, but that still fell $600,000 short of their goal. The initial amount would only have paid to retrofit playground equipment — not buy all-new gear — and would not have covered new sprinklers for kids, Avram said.

Now, the additional funds from Quinn's and Stringer's offices will allow for more ambitious amenities in the quarter-acre playground, Avram said. Parents' ideas include a zip line and a horizontal climbing wall.

The playground is now often strewn with litter and has dirty play equipment, parents have said.

The city Parks Department, which confirmed the additional funding, said the design process is beginning now but did not give a timeline for when the renovations will start.

Avram said she hopes DeSalvio Playground will undergo construction and reopen in time for her 5-year-old twins to use it.

"They were 2 when I started this," she said.

Locals who have comments on the park plan can email desalvioplayground@gmail.com.

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