Washington Square Park to Get Private Security Force


Looks like the newly renovated Washington Square Park is getting a private security force. The Coalition for a Better Washington Square Park is gathering funds to hire off-duty cops and maintenance workers to patrol the Park by next summer. Conflict is promoted in the press between activist Ron Kuby, who says “the rich folk who are sponsoring this want to change the character of the park from the free-wheeling street-theater scene to something that resembles their backyard terraces,” and Coalition founder Dr. Gil Horowitz, who says “Radicals see this as a form of the loss of their public space, but we see this as securing the public space so it is civilized and better for them and for us.” Horowitz says he has “enjoyed Washington Square Park since the 1950s, when I was a student at New York University, and have lived steps from Washington Square Park for more than 40 years, as a resident of Two Fifth Avenue.” The Park has been, in our decades of acquaintance with it, an open-air drug market, and what remainder of this the recent renovation has not discouraged the patrols will presumably end. Photo (cc) Jet200NYC.