Tompkins Square Park Skate Spot Saved

The Patch: A beloved skate spot in Tompkins Square Park is now saved from synthetic turf, the Parks Department said Friday afternoon.

All summer, skateboarders and other East Villagers have been fighting to save an asphalt patch from being turned into synthetic turf as a part of the city's mitigation efforts under a sweeping flood protection plan that will close East River Park for three and a half years.

But after a petition against the asphalt-to-turf plan drew tens of thousands of signatures — and on the eve of a rally expected to be attended by Council Member Carlina Rivera — the city announced it will leave the park as is.

"Tompkins Square Park has served as the epicenter of NYC skateboard culture for decades, as such, we have decided to leave the area previously proposed for synthetic in the park as is, and will not move forward with creating a synthetic turf area there," Parks Department spokesperson Crystal Howard said.

The decision comes after the city met with a skateboarding group in early July and more than 32,000 signed a petition started by local skateboarder Adam Zhu. Read more>>