Attention radicals: You may now have your way with Washington Square Park. The Parks Department has shot down the proposal from a group of Greenwich Village locals to hire uniformed off-duty policemen to bolster the park's patrolling. The plan came to light in June, when the Coalition for a Better Washington Square Park's founder expressed his concern that the freshly-renovated park would slip back into its druggie, freewheelin' past. Opponents argued that rich neighbors were trying to sterilize the park to boost property values, and much name-calling followed. The Villager notes that security plan never really gained traction, and the Parks Department is not considering it. An untimely demise for all fans of class warfare, but there was still a chance to sneak some old-fogeyism into the debate:
Following the announcement, The Villager got a word in with coalition founder Gil Horowitz:
Horowitz, who has lived on the park for decades, explained that the coalition only wants the new Washington Square Park to be safe and clean. He said that drug dealers in the newly renovated park are his group’s primary concern, although he added that skateboarders come in a distant second. Horowitz noted that senior citizens have complained about unruly skateboarders, and said the park's new benches are at risk from skateboarders' "grinds."The benches from hell strike again!
· Parks nixes plan to put paid-detail police in Wash. Sq. [Villager]
· Washington Square Neighbors Don't Want Any Smoke, Smoke [Curbed]