In an effort to conserve water citywide, the Department of Environmental (DEP) and the Department of Parks and Recreation announced the installation of timers on spray showers at playgrounds across the five boroughs.
According to a press release from the DEP, the timers are designed to ensure that the showers will be turned on only when in use. The timers are equip with activation buttons as well as two-minute automatic shut-off timers. The timers are installed as part of New York City’s Water for the Future Program, which aims to reduce water consumption by five percent. Two of the timers have been installed in Queens, one at Glendale Playground, which is on Central Avenue between 70 Street and 71 Street, and at Maple Playground in Flushing. Four hundred timers are scheduled to be installed throughout the city by 2017.
“NYC Water is one of the city’s most precious resources, and it’s important that we conserve it wherever we can while also enhancing opportunities for New Yorkers to enjoy water outdoors,” said DEP Commissioner Carter Strickland in a statement. “By retrofitting spray showers at playgrounds throughout the five boroughs we will improve sewer capacity and reduce waste.”
Without the timers, playground showers use about 7,000 gallons of water every day, according to the DEP. It will reduce that usage by about 80 percent, or about 5,600 gallons of water per day, the DEP said.
Parks Department Commissioner Adrian Benepe said he is glad that the two city agencies are working together to decrease water usage.
“The installation of timers at spray showers across New York City will conserve water and reduce the amount of runoff that enters our sewers, helping to prevent sewer overflows and water pollution during heavy rains,” he said in a statement.
A DEP spokesperson said it is not known exactly how many of the timers will be distributed in Queens and through the rest of the boroughs as that is still being discussed.