For more than 25 years, Ruppert Playground has served a vital role for residents of Community Board 8, which is New York City's most densely populated community and which ranks dead last in publicly accessible recreational space.
The real estate firm Related Companies, which acquired the playground from the city in 1983 as part of an urban renewal plan, has padlocked the entrance to Ruppert Playground and hired private security guards to patrol the area. Related wants tax breaks to continue to keep the park open. If the city fails to meet its demands, neighborhood children will pay the price.
Join us in petitioning the CEO and President of Related Companies to demand that the playground be unlocked immediately and that ownership be restored to the public. Tell Related: Don't punish the children for the sake of your bottom line!
Photo by Nathanael Boehm (cc).
By holding the playground hostage as a negotiation tactic, you are severely punishing the neighborhood children, who have nowhere else to play. Outdoor play is absolutely vital to a child's physical health, cognitive development, and emotional well-being.
The original Ruppert Urban Renewal Plan was seriously flawed as it did not allocate enough park space to accommodate the neighborhood's growing population. The community has been speaking out for years against this injustice.
Don't punish the children for the sake of your bottom line. Please unlock the playground immediately and work with us to transfer the property back to the city so that our families have an outdoor space to gather and play.