The Bronx Community Board 7 is asking the City Parks Department to install an additional PEP station at Van Cortlandt Park in the Northwest Bronx to support park patrol. The application was presented and approved at the 7th Board Meeting of the Bronx Community Board on March 28th.
The request comes as NYC Parks Commissioner Sue Donoghue, along with District 17 City Council member Rafael Salamanca, Jr., on Tuesday, March 28, ordered a Bronx Mobile Command Vehicle for the Parks Enforcement Patrol (PEP) in the South Bronx introduced. Raised with $205,000 in funding from the councilor, Parks officials said the truck complements NYC Parks’ existing emergency management infrastructure and improves PEP’s ability to coordinate during emergencies and special operations.
“The safety of our park visitors is our top priority, and our dedicated Parks Enforcement Patrol deserves the best equipment possible to support this mission,” said Donoghue. “Thank you to Councilor Salamanca for providing the funds to purchase this truck and to our wonderful PEP staff for keeping visitors safe at our Bronx parks year round.”
For his part, Salamanca Jr. said, “As the city’s greenest borough, the Bronxites, who lack courtyards, have used New York City’s park system as a retreat from the dense neighborhoods in which they live. With a record number of Bronxites using public green space in the post-COVID era, it is important that NYC Parks has the infrastructure in place to maintain clean and safe parklands.”
He continued, “As such, since taking office, I have provided $676,000 in capital for various additions to the Parks fleet, including $205,000 in funding for the state-of-the-art Mobile Command Station unveiled today. Thanks to the new Mobile Command Station, Bronxists will feel an added sense of security when visiting our beautiful parks in the South Bronx.”
According to Parks officials, the new Bronx Mobile Command Vehicle will support PEP personnel on expanded operations, such as: B. on operations and details of special task forces. They said the truck will also serve as a coordination point for the emergency management unit and support emergency management operations in the Bronx. Equipped with two-way radios, computer workstations and phones, officials said, the truck will allow central communications dispatchers to stay in constant touch with staff.
The number of park-related incidents that impact people’s safety is likely to increase as the summer months approach and the parks become more populated, as the county does each year. Norwood News has reported a number of such incidents in the past. In addition to safety concerns, including those related to e-bike accidents, other key concerns include excessive litter, camps and the incessant noise late at night and early in the morning, keeping neighbors awake for work the next day.
On the bright side, we’ve also reported on special sales opportunities and RFPs at the city’s various parks, along with updates on skate park openings, park space issues, park exhibits, commemorations, park renaming and expanded summer access, as in the case of Highbridge.
Salamanca represents the South Bronx neighborhoods of Concourse Village, Crotona Park East, East Tremont, Hunts Point, Longwood, Melrose, Morrisania, Port Morris, West Farms, North Brother Island and South Brother Island.
Meanwhile, Norwood News contacted NYC Parks for more information on the above-mentioned “operations and special forces details” related to the South Bronx mobile unit and whether the mobile initiative will be expanded to other parts of the Bronx. We will update this story based on any feedback we receive.