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Brookdale Park Playground Reopens 8 Months After Fire

Brookdale Park Playground, which burned to the ground in April, reopened to the public Thursday.

Brookdale Park playground has reopened, a little over eight months after it burned to the ground in an accidental fire this April.

The playground, which spent months after the fire cordoned off by orange plastic safety fencing, reopened Thursday as an "entirely different playground," with enhanced handicap accessibility.

Originally slated to be entirely rebuilt by mid-October, the project's completion was delayed by Superstorm Sandy and a mulch miscalculation that required a $4,300 change order, among other things.

The former Brookdale Park playground was reduced to smoldering black soot and burnt plastic on April 9, after an accidental fire started by three juveniles who were playing with matches got out of control. By the time fire crews arrived and extinguished the blaze, nothing from the playground was salvageable.

In addition to more handicap accessible equipment, the borough installed an engineered wood fiber surface rather than a plastic mulch surface at the playground this time because it's easier for individuals in wheelchairs to navigate.

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