Delays for Prospect Park’s Ambitious Lakeside Project

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    Well, this is not exactly a surprise but, as the New York Times reports today, Prospect Park’s Lakeside project—which will include new skating rinks, buildings and a major amount of landscaping—is behind schedule. The big news is that the skating rinks and the rest of project aren’t expected to open until fall of 2013, as opposed to this January. Here’s the long and short of it: “Lakeside, a $74 million, 26-acre undertaking, is the first major construction project in 50 years in Prospect Park. It is intended to reinvigorate a long-neglected portion of the park and accommodate the 10 million visitors now streaming to the 585-acre Brooklyn oasis each year. Now, more than five years after plans were announced and two winters after the decrepit Kate Wollman Rink was torn down, the project is half-built and half-imagined.” The article also compares the respective budgets of Central Park and Prospect Park, both of which receive some city funding: Central operates with a $42.4 million budget, while Prospect gets by with $8.3 million, and Lakeside’s financing doesn’t come from the regular budget. This is the other very relevant quote in the story: “The project is emblematic of a park in transition — from a crime-ridden, dilapidated den of 25 years ago to a vibrant, rustic haven struggling to keep pace with maintenance and use demands despite a thinning budget.” Aside from all that, and the fact that it’s a drag that the delays are keeping the rinks from opening, there are a bunch of details in the story about some of Lakeside elements that are supposed to sound pretty darn cool, like “20,000 square feet of bluestone for the walkway beneath a majestic semicircle of London plane trees” and “six new cast bronze urns, based on the original Olmsted and Vaux design.”
    At Prospect Park, a Transformation Is Behind Schedule [NY Times]
    Recent photos of Lakeside construction from the Prospect Park Alliance

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