By Alicia Venter
Lawrence Virgilio Playground, which runs betweens 39th Road and 39th Drive in Woodside, received $7.1 million in capital funding.
The funding will cover repairs and improvements including the reconstruction of the children’s play area; reconstruction of sidewalks, asphalt paths and natural areas; reconstruction of four handball courts; new security lighting for children’s play area, paths and seating areas; and reconstruction of two adult fitness areas.
Council Member Julie Won, Queens Borough President Donovan Richards, NYC Parks Queens Acting Borough Commissioner Jackie Langsam gathered with the community on Thursday, Dec. 8 to celebrate the funding.
“Since taking office, I advocated for these much-needed repairs and was able to get $7.1 million committed with the partnership of the City Council Speaker and Queens Borough President,” said Council Member Julie Won. “Thank you to all of the parents for their advocacy to ensure that this playground gets these much-needed improvements. Our children’s safety and access to green space will continue to be a top priority in our district.”
The funding came after years of community advocacy for repairs — the last upgrades to the playground were in 2007, which included the addition of a mini-pool, basketball courts, pathways and new exercise equipment.
“When Councilmember Won was running for election, my daughter and I invited her on a playdate to see the issues at Lawrence Virgilio Playground. I am delighted to see that so much of what we talked about—the lack of gates, the broken spray shower, the slippery mats, the incorrectly placed fencing around the swings—finally will be addressed,” said parent and resident Nicole Haroutunian.