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Cuomo: Playground upgrades at Robert Moses, Heckscher state parks

Two state parks in Suffolk County will get modern playgrounds with special sections for the disabled and children of different ages, Gov. Andrew M. Cuomo said Thursday.

An “oceanside-themed” playground is planned for Field 5 at Robert Moses State Park in Babylon, Cuomo said. It will feature seahorse and dolphin rockers for children ages 2 to 5, George Gorman, Long Island deputy regional park director, said by email.

The 5- to 12-year-old set will gain “wave climbers,” or walls with holes, he said.

At East Islip’s Heckscher State Park, Field 6 will be expanded with new “meadow-themed” equipment and a large, central pavilion to offer shade, replacing the gazebo that now stands there, Cuomo said.

The specifics include more open space with flowers and native plants, Gorman said.

That playground is one of the most popular at the park because it’s near a picnic area and has water views. On sunny weekends, it can be so crowded that some children are left out, he added.

At the park’s Field 1, new swing sets will be added to the playground, along with a safer surface, accessible walkways and seating.

All the improvements should be completed by next summer, Gorman said.

They are among the $12.6 million of playground upgrades Cuomo announced for a dozen state parks around New York.

By 2020, he said, 100 playgrounds at state parks should be updated — or added.

The initiative is in the governor’s 10-year plan to invest $900 million in state parks.

“With this investment, we are ensuring our park system remains second to none and I encourage families from near and far to get out and explore all New York has to offer,” Cuomo said.

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