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Belgian brick battle at W. 89th Street playground

July 9, 2013 3:24:06 PM PDT
A nasty playground battle is pitting parents against parents at a public school in Manhattan.

Most want to replace the aging, Belgian brick playground, saying it's dangerous.

But some others say the playground on West 89th Street is architecturally significant and should remain as is.

Now the issue is in court.

Is playground 89 is safe enough for the children of today?

These cobblestones, or so-called Belgian blocks are at the heart of disagreement

City Council Member Gale Brewer supports plans to renovate the playground and has helped secure $600,000 in funding.

"Those Belgian blocks that are on the surface of the park would be replaced by a flat surface," Brewer said.

But 9-year-old Lucia Alexeyev is happy with the playground just the way it is.

"Here's like the perfect place, if it was flat there would be nothing to do," Alexeyev said.

Eyewitness News is told renovations would not include completely removing all the Belgian blocks, or tamper with the unique amphitheatre steps, but there is strong neighborhood resistance to any changes.

"They already renovated it once and it was an improvement, and I don't think they can improve it again, I think it can only be ruined," said Howard Levine, a neighborhood resident.

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