It was all but inevitable. The NYC Parks Department took action this week to stop neighborhood kids from continuing to flaunt social distancing rules by removing rims from basketball courts across the city.
In Clove Lakes Park in Sunnyside, Staten Islander News Service reporters noticed that adolescents were obeying the rules, and were playing “21” instead of team basketball over the weekend.
Not all rims have been removed. Rather, b-ball courts were selectively targeted where New Yorkers decided to ignore social distancing rules. The courts at Edwin Markham I.S. 51 remain in place.
Parks Police were present at I.S. 51 playground in Graniteville to be sure no group play occurred; Parks Department Police were also stationed at the Clove Lakes basketball courts, likely for the same reason. (More pics of B-ball courts at end of this article!)
Besides this, there are other closures, however, there is still quite a bit to do, in terms of exercising and enjoying NYC parks.
• Bathroom facilities located within NYC parks remain open, and are cleaned daily, completely disinfected before the start of each new day.
• City parks and remain open at this time.
• Governor Andrew Cuomo announced Wednesday that ALL city playgrounds will now be off-limits. City playgrounds where social distancing was not being observed were temporarily closed to the public by Mayor de Blasio on Tuesday, including the Saturn Play Equipment playground, and a second playground, in Clove Lakes Park on Staten Island. The governor’s newly announced closure now targets all playgrounds within the lmiits of NYC.
While city and state parks and woodland areas remain open to the public, there are many closures. Here is an updated list:
• All public gatherings in NYC parks are cancelled through April 22, 2020. This includes Shape Up NYC programs, Urban Park Ranger programs, tournaments and sports practices, special events, and NYC Parks Stewardship events.
• Street Games has been cancelled.
• Green Thumb Community Gardens are closed until further notice, however, limited access will be provided to garden members for maintenance and preparation for the new growing season.
Additionally, most Parks Department facilities are closed. This includes:
• NYC Parks Recreation Centers
• City Nature Centers
• Basketball courts (only where residents repeatedly ignored warning to stop playing without regard to social distancing rules)
• Tennis courts are closed, and tennis season is postponed
• Historic Sites are closed
• City-run marinas are closed
• The Swedish Cottage is closed. The High Line Park on Manhattan’s West Side is closed. The Arsenal Gallery is closed through April 12.
• Most concessions are closed. These include iced skating rinks, amusement parks, carousels, golf courses, indoor tennis courts, souvenir shops, and other indoor facilities.
• Farmers markets, gas stations, snack bars and restaurants offering take-out and delivery, as well as food carts, remain open.
For more information about coronavirus and a guide on how to stay safe, please visit http://nyc.gov/coronavirus , or text COVID to 692-692 to receive regular SMS texts with the latest news and developments from Notify NYC .