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April 14, 2012 By Steven Greer
Saturday was a stunningly beautiful, blue sky, 70 degree day in Battery Park, but the West Thames Park grass field was still not opened despite having been ready for months. All of the grass fields in BPC are still closed.
Tess Huxley, the head of the Parks Conservancy, explained at the recent BPCA town hall that all of the fields needed time to establish roots. In fact, any golf course greens keeper or sports field professional caretaker would have been able to open the fields long ago, even after seeding in the Fall.
The mistake that Tess Huxley’s crew makes is that they fail to properly close the fields during rain, or to properly rest the fields when obvious wear and tear begins to burn out the grass. They have an “all or nothing” mentality: either shut down all grass fields or keep them all open no matter how conditions change.
As a result of this incompetence by the BPC Parks, residents are deprived of one the main attractions that draws people to the area to pay such high property taxes. The parks in BPC are only opened half of the year under the current management. This leads some to call for replacing the grass with unhealthy hideous artificial turf.
Some have speculated whether the real agenda of the BPCA, which never wanted to assume control the West Thames grass field, is to create a false problem of short annual usage time of the grass field, which then makes converting it to an artificial turf field a viable option. However, the residents overwhelmingly prefer the idea of having the grass field with no organized soccer allowed, and the large artificial turf fields at Asphalt Green are ample for organized sports.
In the classic album Dark Side of the Moon, Roger Waters wrote the lyric “The lunatics are on the grass” referring to overly strict caretakers of a London lawn who fanatically kept people off of the grass. In our case, we have Tess Huxley and her boss, Gayle Horwitz, as our lunatics running the grass lawns.
(Click images to expand)
I wonder why you make a particular case about this field when it is the case of most of the park in BPC. This year as usual the cherry tree lawn was closed when the trees were in full bloom…
I never understood that but every year it is the same, they wait until the flowers are half blown away to open the lawn. Rector place lawn are only opening next week, why?
I don’t think your read our article well. We mention that Tess Huxley does this with all of the lawns due to incompetence. By the way, the round lawn with cherry trees is managed by Brookfield, not BPCA, and was closed because it was re-sodded in the fall.