The little park at the end of Emmons Avenue that was once written off as nothing but a pipe dream is well on its way to becoming a reality this week.
City Councilmember Lew Fidler confirmed that he will allocate $400,000 in capital expense money in support of a new park at Brigham Street.
Another $100,000 will come from Borough President Marty Markowitz’s office.
“I love spending money on my neighborhood parks,” Fidler said.
Fidler, who had supported a prior proposal to build a restaurant at the site, said that he never actually opposed construction of a new park at Brigham Street.
Instead, Fidler said that he was attempting to satisfy a demand for more parking that had long been a priority for Community Board 15.
Fidler also said that he has met all his other parks priorities and that a fresh term in office will afford him the opportunity to fund the Brigham Park project.
Fidler is expected to easily win re−election this fall following the defeat of term limits.
“I’m very happy that the councilman came around and funded a very worthy project,” said Gene Berardelli, the Sheepshead Bay⁄Plumb Beach Civic Association activist who has been spearheading the Brigham Street park plan since its inception.
He also happens to be challenging Fidler’s 46th District council seat on the Republican ticket.
“Gene was in my office two months ago with all the brass from [the] Parks [Department] and the Brooklyn Borough Commissioner’s office and I didn’t know he was running against me,” Fidler said.
According to Berardelli, the total $500,000 allocation will be used to perform required test borings of the site located at the foot of the Belt Parkway on ramp.
“This is a tangible start,” Berardelli said. “People will soon see things happening on the land with the preparation of this park. By the end of the year we’ll know the result of the borings.”
An old pipeline from the nearby sewer treatment plant runs underneath the site of the proposed park. The tests are partly intended to detect any possible contamination.
“They need to do soil sampling to understand what we’re building on,” Fidler said. “I don’t want to guarantee that we’re going to be able to build a park here if it comes back that the price is going to be $20 million to [clean it up]. I don’t think that that’ll be the case.”
According to Berardelli, results of the test borings and full schematics of the new park could come before the year is out.
This latest source of funding follows a $50,000 allocation previous awarded through Assemblymember Alan Maisel.
All of the funding will be funneled through the Parks Department.
©2009 Community News Group
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