Editorial: Time to flush out the truth

July 25, 2013 Editorial Staff
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A year and a half after the bathrooms in the Bay Eighth Street Playground were closed – ostensibly because of a broken water pipe – the disturbing truth has finally begun to emerge.

What shut the comfort station down, and has inconvenienced thousands of park-goers for far too long already, was not a piece of pipe gone bad, but necessary pipes that were never installed at all – a situation that this newspaper discovered and has brought to the attention of the public.

The unsavory situation became clear when a city crew finally arrived in the park to start digging earlier this month. What they found was confounding – there were no sewer mains connecting the bathrooms in the playground to the main sewer main running under Cropsey Avenue.

It’s still not clear how and when this actually occurred. The playground was last renovated in the 1990s, and while the Department of Parks has confirmed the situation, it has not yet provided this newspaper with a construction history for the comfort station.

Nonetheless, it is completely inconceivable that whoever installed or renovated the plumbing at the Bay Eighth Street Playground did not connect it to the system taking sewage away, meaning that whatever was flushed down the toilet in the bathrooms there simply had no place to go.

Local leaders have promised an investigation – that inquiry, in our view, cannot come soon enough.

In the meantime, the unsatisfactory status quo continues, with the crowds who flock to the playground forced to utilize Portosans, and left with no place to wash their hands.

And, it seems to us, the questions have just begun to be asked – not only, how did this happen, but where did the sewage go, and what is the impact on the park, and the neighborhood at large?

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