Sunday, April 1, 2012

Once Trashed by Cyclists and Skateboarders Kim Lau Square is Now in Full Bloom Thanks to Chinatown Volunteers

            Local residents around Kim Lau Square have been working hard to reclaim their once peaceful park from menacing skateboarders and trick cyclists for the past several years. Volunteers Nancy Linday and Jeanie Chin, both residents of a nearby residential building led the effort in organizing nearly a dozen people to beautify and protect the Square. They hope the new plants will prevent the skaters from using planters as ramps, and create a more appropriate use of open space for locals and tourists to enjoy. The addition of more park benches, intentionally placed in the exact spot where skateboarders illegally cemented over the hand laid cobble stones to smooth surface so they could use it as a ramp, have curtailed the skateboarders use of Kim Lau square significantly. Residents worked closely with elected officials and the Parks Dept. to place the benches in the exact spots that would eliminate skateboard jumping and cycling.
Kim Lau Square planters before volunteers planted bulbs provided free of charge by 
Partnership For Parks

photo: CCRC  (click to enlarge photo)  Kim Lau Square planters April 2012, in full bloom.
 The benches were installed by the Parks Department after a tremendous amount of community advocacy and political will. 
photo: CCRC  (Click to enlarge photo)

Today the square is in full bloom thanks to the volunteers who, in an effort to preserve the beauty of Kim Lau Square, part of Chatham Square, joined together for a day of gardening and cleaning back in  November, 2011. 
photo: CCRC (click to enlarge)
Sing Tao Newspaper (click to enlarge photo)

They planted  various bulbs (all provided free of charge) over the course of a few hours with the guidance of Partnership For Parks, who provided tools, gloves and expertise to the novice garden volunteers.
Kim Lau Square today , photo CCRC (click to enlarge)

Kim Lau Square last August, photo: Downtown Express

Last August Downtown Express reported on the rogue cyclists and skateboarders trashing Kim Lau Square, which is home to the memorial arch dedicated to Ben Kim Lau and veterans of Chinese American decent.
C.C.R.C.'s volunteers and friends spent considerable time documenting the nearly complete take over the Square by obnoxious skateboarders and trick cyclists using the area as their private playground. 
Today the space is used by musicians, tourists and residents who can relax without the threat of a bicycle hitting them, or a skateboarder slamming into them. 

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