Updated 9/19: You can find a recap of the plans for the space here.
There are several items of potential interest on the docket tomorrow night (Sept. 15) for Community Board 3's Parks, Recreation, Waterfront, & Resiliency Committee virtual meeting.
The fourth item of the agenda, "Proposed plan for renovation of the multi-purpose court in NW corner of Tompkins Square Park," has drawn much interest to date...
As you may recall, from September 2019, the skateboarding community came together to show their support for keeping the multipurpose courts (aka TF) in the northwest corner of Tompkins Square Park free of synthetic turf.
As we reported in July 2019, the city had plans — apparently only known to residents who may have attended a Community Board 3 committee meeting in May — to cover the courts with synthetic turf, rendering the space useless for skateboarders and street hockey players, among other groups. (People have been skating at this spot since the 1980s, and it has been called "the last great meet-up spot for skateboarders and their friends in New York.")
However, less than 24 hours before a much-publicized rally was to take place, the city announced that it would no longer cover the space in turf, originally proposed to make up for the amenities lost during the years-long gutting of East River Park.
"Tompkins Square Park has served as the epicenter of NYC skateboard culture for decades. As such, we have decided to leave the area previously proposed for synthetic in the park as is and will not move forward with creating a synthetic turf area there," Parks Department spokesperson Crystal Howard said in a statement to Patch at the time.
There have been plans in the works titled "Tompkins Square Park Pavement Reconstruction." This project would, as the name suggests, "reconstruct pavement surfaces at Tompkins Square Park."
While areas of the Park could stand for some resurfacing, doing so on the site that skaters use could potentially render the TF useless. As one regular told us: "When they put new asphalt in, it can take years to set ... it's the smooth ground that's great to skate on that we love. Or they could fuck it up and ruin it as a skate spot."
Another resident we talked with wishes the Parks Department would focus on other areas needing attention in the Park, such as the restrooms, which some people think are the worst in North America. (Relief is on the way there with the expected reconstruction of the Tompkins Square Park field house next year. Or so.)
According to the Parks Department website, the design for the "Pavement Reconstruction" phase is 30% finished, with an anticipated February 2023 completion date — just for the design. (The project is also still in the procurement phase.)
Here is the link to the Zoom registration for tomorrow night's (Sept. 15) meeting... which starts at 6:30.