May. 5, 2023 By Elijah Hamilton
The New York City Parks Department held a community input meeting via Zoom on May 3 to gather public feedback on the potential designs for the reconstruction of “Uncle” Vito F. Maranzano Glendale Playground and Baseball Field 7 at Juniper Valley Park in Middle Village.
According to a representative from the Parks Department, it would cost up to $4.25 million to overhaul the baseball field at Juniper Valley Park, while a project to renovate “Uncle” Vito F. Maranzano Glendale Playground would cost $5.8 million for new play equipment and to provide proper shading during the summer months, improve ADA accessibility and add a new entrance.
As for the baseball field at Juniper Valley Park, some residents expressed concern over what turf would be used on the field. A Parks Department representative said the field would feature both synthetic and natural turf.
“The current thought is to have a synthetic turf infield and a natural turf outfield,” said Eric Mattis, who is part of the Parks Department design team working on the two projects.
Some residents questioned where the field would be multipurpose. Mattis confirmed that would be unlikely due to a limited budget.
“Currently, the the budget would only afford us to have a synthetic turf infield for this particular project. So we wouldn’t be providing synthetic turf for the overall field,” Mattis said. “So while you could technically still have the multipurpose in the outfield, it probably wouldn’t hold up well with the natural turf.”
Councilman Robert Holden, whose office provided funding for both projects, suggested it was important to overhaul the entrance to the “Uncle” Vito F. Maranzano Glendale Playground.
“It’s not best looking,” Holden said of the entrance, adding that it could be “a little more inviting and greener.”
Holden also said he is happy to have been able to provide funding for the two renovation projects.
“Our parks are some of our most precious resources and it’s an immense privilege to be able to allocate funding to renovate these beloved spaces,” he said. “These strategic investments will undoubtedly enhance our parks [and] enrich the lives of countless families for years to come.”
Currently, the Parks Department is still gathering input from residents regarding the design of both projects. The design process is expected to take anywhere between 10 and 15 months.
Residents interested in providing input on both projects can do so by filling out the Parks Department surveys for the Juniper Valley Park baseball field and “Uncle” Vito F. Maranzano Glendale Playground.