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San Francisco ready to rebuild Golden Gate Park playground

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Vandals torched the Koret Playground last summer

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Last summer, someone torched part of the playground in the Koret Children’s Quarter in Golden Gate Park in the middle of the night, necessitating expensive repairs.

The playground, once called the Sharon Quarter, includes a 1914 Herschell-Spillman Company carousel and has been in place since 1888 (reopening after an extensive renovation with the Koret Quarter name attached in 2007).

In June, unidentified vandals burned some 40 percent of the play area in the dead of night, reducing much of equipment to twisted and melted strings of plastic. Early estimates pegged the repair costs at up to $1 million.

Now Hoodline reports that the city’s Recreations and Park has found a contractor to start fixing the besmirched play space, although it doesn’t appear that there’s a specific timetable in effect yet, as the contract is not yet final.

The San Francisco Parks Alliance (a private group) raised funds to help undo the damage, and the donations page appears to still be open for anyone willing to chip in some extra.

For those who prefer not to transfer money online:

To make a gift to support the repair effort by mail, send your check made out to San Francisco Parks Alliance to 1663 Mission Street, suite 320, San Francisco CA, 94103, Attn. Koret Playground Repair. To make a gift by phone call Paula Martin at 415-801-4161.

At its best times, Recreations and Park refers to the Koret area as “a blend of old and newer features” ranging from the classic carousel (one of several to feature in the park since the 19th century) to newer elements like a climbing wall or the abrasive but beloved concrete slides.