Tuesday, August 31, 2010
We promise to make every effort to stop slacking now that the lazy days of summer are coming to a close!
Monday, August 30, 2010
Thursday, August 26, 2010
Tuesday, August 24, 2010
Monday, August 23, 2010
Below is a detailed update from FOWO identifying the current projects currently underway around the park:
As you may have experienced by now, the Williamsbridge Oval Playground is undergoing a vast amount of construction right now. Because of this construction, almost half of the park is off-limits to the public; the recreation center and its surrounding playgrounds have been dismantled and are being restructured. Unfortunately, completion of the new recreation center (details of its new amenities will be posted on the BD in the coming months) will be Spring 2011. But, the surrounding playgrounds are to be completed this coming Fall (late) 2010. Below is a plan of the playground areas sent to the Friends of the Williamsbridge Oval from the Department of Parks and Recreation:
After completion of Playgrounds 1 and 3, a new, improved dog run is to be constructed near the North entrance of the Oval Park:
The dog run plans were presented to the Friends of the Oval last August. The new dog run will be larger (than the current Oval dog run) with areas for both large dogs and smaller dogs. It will also have picnic tables and benches for people watching their dogs. Because of problems with the water lines in the Park, there will be no “Doggy Water Play” located in the dog run. The Parks’ Department is working very hard to install a dog-friendly water fountain in the Park near the dog run. Completion of this new dog run is scheduled for late Fall 2010.
Because of construction, the recreation center has been experiencing an increase in vandalism. I have seen many young adults break into the construction site, climb on the roof of the recreation center, and then thrown materials down. This is dangerous for the trespassers, wastes tax payers’ money, and prolongs construction. If you see anyone in the construction site (other than construction workers), please call the 52 precinct at (718) 220-5811 (I recommend having the number programed into your cell phones!). An increase in calls regarding any vandalism or the selling of illegal substances (alcohol, food without a permit, and drugs) on park grounds will only help convince the 52 that the Oval needs enforcement.
Also, the Oval Park is a beautiful park that is in need of community residents who will insist that the park be respected, cleaned, and maintained. Simply asking people using the Oval park to pick up after their dogs or to throw away their trash is a small victory in helping the Oval reach its potential. Please join Friends of the Williamsbridge Oval on facebook:
You can also contact the Friends of the Williamsbridge Oval via their website:
On Monday, August 23, Friends of the Williamsbridge Oval have organized a “Night Walk” to identify non-working lights in the Park. Please join us at 9 pm. We will meet inside the park near the Keeper’s Gate (the entrance at the north end of the park, across the street from the Keeper’s House, near Reservoir Pl.). Please bring cell phones, flashlights, pen and paper, and, of course, dogs are always welcome. The “Night Walk” should last less than an hour.
Here are some highlights from an informative email from a Garden staffer:
[...]The New York Botanical Garden’s Intermodal Transportation Facility~ErLu
(ITF), [is] an open-air pre-cast concrete structure with one basement and
seven floors of parking that will accommodate up to 825 cars.
This new parking facility was designed to accommodate the Garden’s
growing audience, but it will also benefit the community in a number
of direct and indirect ways. By taking advantage of new Garden
membership packages, community residents will be able to park their
cars overnight and commuters may use the garage to “park and ride.”
Over the last few years, the Garden made substantial progress by
acquiring and clearing the site. We are very pleased to report that
during the last year, we were able to complete the financing, with
assistance from the City, State and private sector partners, and we
are now ready to begin construction. The construction phase will
immediately create 426 jobs. Upon project completion, in approximately
two years, 10-12 permanent Garden operations/maintenance, security,
horticultural, and visitor services jobs will be created to manage and
care for the ITF. As always, NYBG employment opportunities will be
posted on our website, as they become available, at
As part of our ongoing efforts to keep the community informed, this is
what you can expect during the construction phase:
1. Elements of the project also include improvements of the
street and sidewalks on Webster Ave., Bedford Park Blvd., and
Botanical Square area.
2. There may be temporary traffic interruptions on Webster Ave.
and near Botanical Square for brief periods of time at different
points during the construction phase. We will make every effort to
avoid peak traffic times.
3. Working hours at the construction site are Monday – Friday,
7:00am - 3:30pm. Overtime may occasionally be utilized but only as
4. Site mobilization will begin the week of August 23rd.
5. First activities will be delivery of construction equipment
6. Excavation for foundations will be the first major
7. Once excavation is complete, sheeting and shoring and
preparation for foundations will follow.
8. Foundations will be formed and poured this winter
9. The construction is scheduled to be complete in spring 2012.
Wednesday, August 18, 2010
A quick rundown of the group's mission is below. They are always looking for more community-minded folks to join their group, so please feel free to stop by Thursday's meeting!
Friends of the Oval is a volunteer-led collection of neighbors who care about and delight in their park. Membership is open to anyone and everyone who wants to preserve and improve the Williamsbridge Oval as a vital community resource for the thousands of adults, children and elderly who enjoy the park each week.
Friends of the Williamsbridge Oval is committed to using people power to assist the NYC Department of Parks and Recreation in properly maintaining and supporting our park. As neighbors who love the Oval and our neighborhood, we work together with community residents, elected officials and neighborhood organizations to identify needs in the park, monitor repairs and renovations and sponsor activities to foster community connectedness.
The piece also reveals that Espada's $56K/year
Monday, August 16, 2010
Check out the blog here.
Thursday, August 12, 2010
Tuesday, August 10, 2010
Monday, August 9, 2010
In any case, the full list is below. The most surprising name on this to us is Haile Rivera, a former potential Espada challenger and Obama volunteer (and dining partner) whose tears on election night were chronicled by the Norwood News. I guess he needs to pay his bills too...hold your nose and cash the check, Haile.
Here's the full list sent to us (Rivera is #30):
1. ACEVEDO, JONATHAN SENATOR PEDRO ESPADA, JR BRONX COMMUNITY OUTREACH SPECIALIST $769.24SA
2. BEARDSLEE-RUIZ, PATRICIA M SENATOR PEDRO ESPADA, JR ALBANY ASSISTANT $7.25TE
3. CALHOUN, SANDRA C SENATOR PEDRO ESPADA, JR ALBANY OFFICE MANAGER $1,807.70RA
4. CALLAHAN, WILLIAM J SENATOR PEDRO ESPADA, JR BUFFALO SPECIAL ASSISTANT TO THE UPSTATE DIR $442.31SA
5. CARELA, AIDA J SENATOR PEDRO ESPADA, JR BRONX OUTREACH SPECIALIST $19.00TE
6. DE PENA, JOSHUA SENATOR PEDRO ESPADA, JR BRONX COMMUNITY OUTREACH SPECIALIST $1,346.16SA
7. DEJESUS, JUAN G SENATOR PEDRO ESPADA, JR BRONX COMMUNITY OUTREACH SPECIALIST $1,346.16RA
8. DENNIS, DENISHA S SENATOR PEDRO ESPADA, JR BRONX RECEPTIONIST $1,153.85SA
9. DIAZ, ALEX SENATOR PEDRO ESPADA, JR BRONX CHIEF OF STAFF $3,653.85RA
10. DRAZAN, EMILY C SENATOR PEDRO ESPADA, JR ALBANY SPECIAL ASSISTANT FOR FISCAL POLICY $1,846.16RA
11. ELLIOTT, ELISON J SENATOR PEDRO ESPADA, JR BRONX SPECIAL ADVISOR $4,538.47RA
12. FRIDAY, LEONARD M SENATOR PEDRO ESPADA, JR BRONX CONSTITUENT LIAISON $11.00TE
13. GARY, MICHAEL V SENATOR PEDRO ESPADA, JR BRONX COMMUNITY ORGANIZER $346.16SA
14. GONZALEZ, SIGFREDO SENATOR PEDRO ESPADA, JR BRONX COMMUNITY OUTREACH OFFICER $1,153.85SA
15. HARRIS, MARZETTA L SENATOR PEDRO ESPADA, JR BRONX DIRECTOR OF OUTREACH $2,500.00RA
16. HARRIS-COLEMAN, MONICA A SENATOR PEDRO ESPADA, JR BRONX EDUCATION LIAISON $1,923.08RA
17. JOHNSON, LUIS M SENATOR PEDRO ESPADA, JR BRONX OUTREACH COMMUNITY RELATIONS SPECIAL $1,153.85RA
18. LABOY, FRANCK SENATOR PEDRO ESPADA, JR BRONX DIRECTOR OF COMMUNICATIONS $1,730.77RA
19. LANDAUER, JANET A SENATOR PEDRO ESPADA, JR ALBANY ASSISTANT $7.25TE
20. Lawrence, Mortimer A, Majority Staff, Albany, Special Counsel to the Majority Leader, $6798
21. LEDER, DARLENE A SENATOR PEDRO ESPADA, JR ALBANY SPECIAL ASSISTANT TO CHIEF OF STAFF $1,923.08RA
22. MANGIONE, STEPHEN J SENATOR PEDRO ESPADA, JR BRONX PUBLIC RELATIONS DIRECTOR $2,153.85SA
23. MANSFIELD, THOMAS C SENATOR PEDRO ESPADA, JR ALBANY CHIEF STAFF FOR LEG & STRATEGIC AFF $3,846.16RA
24. MARTIN, NATHANIEL M SENATOR PEDRO ESPADA, JR BRONX DIR OF ADV OPERATIONS & OUTREACH SP $1,730.77RA
25. ORTIZ, YADIRA SENATOR PEDRO ESPADA, JR BRONX ADMINISTRATIVE ASSISTANT $1,769.24RA
26. Pegano, Daniel L, Maj Counsel/Program/Committee Staff, Bronx, General Counsel $1923.08
27. PFAFF, DAVID B SENATOR PEDRO ESPADA, JR BUFFALO DIR UPSTATE RELATIONS FOR MAJ LDR $2,692.31RA
28. PIGEON, G STEVEN SENATOR PEDRO ESPADA, JR ALBANY COUNSEL TO THE MAJORITY LEADER $5,769.24RA
29. REYES, NORREIDA I SENATOR PEDRO ESPADA, JR ALBANY DIRECTOR OF MULTI MEDIA $3,076.93RA
30. RIVERA, HAILE M SENATOR PEDRO ESPADA, JR BRONX SP AST ECONO DR. FOR THE VP URB PLA $1,615.39SA
31. RODRIGUEZ, MARIA A SENATOR PEDRO ESPADA, JR BRONX DEPUTY DIRECTOR OF OUTREACH $1,923.08RA
32. ROSEBURGH, SHAWN W SENATOR PEDRO ESPADA, JR BRONX SEN OUTREACH COMMU REL SPECIALIST $1,730.77SA
33. SANTANA, RIQUEVIL SENATOR PEDRO ESPADA, JR BRONX OUTREACH COMMUNITY RELATIONS SPECIAL $1,653.85RA
34. ST PAUL, RICHARD E SENATOR PEDRO ESPADA, JR BRONX COUNSEL $3,288.47SA
35. TORRES, JEANETTE SENATOR PEDRO ESPADA, JR BRONX OFC RESCE MGR CHARITY OUTRCH COORD $3,269.24RA
36. TUCKER, CURTIS J SENATOR PEDRO ESPADA, JR NEW YORK DIR. OF LEGIS POLICY MAJ. LEADER $5,000.00RA
37. WALSH, CHRISTOPHER P SENATOR PEDRO ESPADA, JR BUFFALO SPECIAL ASSISTANT TO THE UPSTATE DIR $1,000.00SA
38. WANGLIEN, DANIELLE M SENATOR PEDRO ESPADA, JR NEW YORK COUNSEL TO THE MAJORITY LEADER $3,653.85RA
39. WILLIAMS, JOEY SENATOR PEDRO ESPADA, JR BRONX ADMINISTRATIVE ASSISTANT $1,923.08RA