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NYC Parks opens new mounted command facility in Queens after 20-plus years

Jul. 3, 2023 By John Schilling

A brand new Parks Enforcement Patrol (PEP) Mounted Command Facility will open at Sunrise Stables in Gemini Fields, the New York City Department of Parks & Recreation announced on Friday. The new command facility, the first to open in the borough in over two decades, will be home to two horses and allow for increased patrols in Queens and Brooklyn parks.

“We’re excited to debut our new command facility at Sunrise Stables for mounted Parks Enforcement Patrol units, the first facility of its type in Queens in 23 years!” NYC Parks Commissioner Sue Donoghue said. “Our Parks horses Fiona and Ginger will help our dedicated PEP officers patrol some of the marquee parks in Queens and Brooklyn, as well as the beaches and boardwalk in Rockaway.”

The new NYC Parks Queens Mounted Command Facility opened in Gemini Fields.Photo courtesy of NYC Parks

To support the new command facility, the L.P. Rizzuto Foundation made a $162,000 donation, allowing for a new office trailer and horse trailer to be added to Sunrise Stables, which is operated by Gallop NYC. The last time the Parks Mounted Command had two horses housed nearby was at Forest Park from 1997 until 2000.

“We are so thankful to the L.P. Rizzuto Foundation for this donation, which will allow us to provide a more visible presence in our parks, furthering our commitment to keep our greenspaces safe and welcoming, assist with crowd control during special events, and provide first aid when needed,” Donoghue added.

This expansion not only allows for mounted PEP officers to better patrol the immediate area but also popular areas like Flushing Meadows-Corona Park, Prospect Park, and the Rockaway Beach Boardwalk. The new command facility will also serve as a training location for new mounted recruits, according to NYC Parks.

The new command facility is the first in Queens in 23 years.Photo courtesy of NYC Parks

“We are excited to expand our Parks Mounted Unit into Queens, here at Sunrise Stables, and thank Gallop NYC for welcoming us,” NYC Parks Deputy Commissioner of Urban Park Service and Public Programs Margaret Nelson said. “Located on the border of Brooklyn and Queens, this expansion will allow the communities of these two boroughs to interact with the Mounted Unit as they patrol to keep our parks safe and educate the public.”

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