Roslindale school playground destroyed in arson fire

UPDATE: The Boston Fire Department reports somebody set the Sumner School playground on fire.

Kasey Davis Appleman videoed some of the fire that destroyed the playground behind the Basile Street school in Roslindale Square (she also posted photos) - a month after somebody tried to set the playground on fire.

A Boston Police detective responded to the scene, along with Boston Fire investigators.

The Boston Fire Department reports the fire, called in around 9:50 p.m., spread into trees and from there to electrical wires, which caught on fire and began to arc.

Adam Rogoff photographed the aftermath of the fire:

Sumner School playground fire
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"The Boston Fire Department

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"The Boston Fire Department reports the fire spread into trees and from there to electrical wires, which caught on fire and began to arc."

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The jerk store called...

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There's a special place in you-know-where for someone that deliberately sets a school playground on fire.

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ugh

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This is why we can't have nice things..

Wasn't another playground just rebuilt this year because of another fire? Wasn't this nearby (or at least in in that part of town)

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Geez, someone thinks the kids

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Geez, someone thinks the kids are having too much fun and seriously want to curb that or something?

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And several others

As far as I know the Ohrenberger playground is still not rebuilt, and I think there was a fire recently at the Bates school, and the Philbrick playground has also had recent small fires as evidenced by melted playground equipment. It's deplorable that anyone would do this, and even worse in Roslindale where there are so few city playgrounds.

I heard from a school parent that the Sumner might be starting a crowdfunding campaign. If I find out more about that I will post here.

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Ohrenberger playground

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is still not rebuilt. They were supposed to get working on rebuilding it over April vacation, but they only worked for a day or two. Not much has been done since. The fire was in August 2015.

Source - My house backs up to school field.

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that just plain old sucks.

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that just plain old sucks. Hopefully the community can come together to build them a new one.

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My kids are super bummed.

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They grew up in that playground (oldest a junior in college now), Mom worked late, Dad and kids got Wapo Taco or pizza and hung out until it got dark or Mom was off work and would join us. Lots of people just like us too, its the only thing around for a lot of young families. Barn raising anyone?

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City/Commonwealth should rebuild asap.

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The school is a city-owned facility directly serving our families, so the city (and to some extent the Commonwealth) are responsible for its good repair. I would like to think that if they expedited things, they would be able to have the playground rebuilt over the summer, in time for the start of school in September. But I know that the Ohrenberger playground was destroyed last July, and rebuilding only started last month (don't know if it's actually finished yet).

Hopefully the Sumner community can get organized and motivate the appropriate powers-that-be to move the process along tootsweet. Nine months seems an awful long time for a school and a neighborhood to be without what many would consider a central resource.

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Easier said than done. Have

Easier said than done. Have to allocate funds. Put out bids for contracts. Design it. Build it. That takes time. I agree that it should be expedited but only so much they can do. Hopefully it can be pushed.

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Being on city property, I

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Being on city property, I wonder if parents could do anything? I have seen parent groups fundraise and do the work themselves in other playgrounds.

Not sure if it's allowed due to liabilities, etc, but having no playground for kids for a seemingly long time for us will seem like eternity to the kids that frequented that playground.

The whole thing is a shame.

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maybe

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If they've got the funds in their operating budget. I think the first step is seeing which pot has the money and then getting the OK to get at that money.

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Not That Easy

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Sadly, I don't believe there is a process to replace "as-is." as we might find reasonable. Also we are at the end of a fiscal year, and the school department budget is already under harsh criticism, and certainly something like this is not in next year's budget either.

All of the playgrounds, in parks and schoolyards, are not built by the City and its own construction people. These are all built by outside contractors that specialize in these things. As noted in the other threads, there will be a process to clean up, design, and build something new in its place. The process includes bidding this out to a designer, then a contractor that will facilitate the design. Both will have to meet certain criteria as set forth by the city associated with experience, cost, and whether they have a past relationship with the city in such endeavors, and whether that was a good or bad experience. New safety standards will also have to be met.

That is not an easy process and it is time consuming.

There are efforts underway elsewhere in Roslindale to rebuild playgrounds at Fallon Field and Healy Field to improve their design and accessibility. There have been numerous public meetings ongoing for months. The build-out of Fallon is upcoming and the design phase for Healy is still underway. These all have budgetary constraints as well. Yes, people can raise funds and help pay for these things but no matter how this is cut up, we are quite a few months out on this - maybe longer.

Many of the play areas such as that at Sumner no longer meet current standards (as such) and the ever-changing face of Roslindale is bringing new families and new ideas in to contribute to the public input process. Given this play area is used by a broad community beyond the kids who attend the school. it is likely public meetings that will include school families, abutters, and the community at-large when they do happen. When... is anyone's guess. This loss just happened.

People may want to research how the Conley School on Poplar St did their play area build-out a few years ago. That was built in part, if memory serves me correctly, through fund-raising efforts as well as public (city) monies.

This is a terrible loss to the kids at the school and to the others in the community, including the kids from our day care at the community center, who used it a couple of afternoons every week.

As other threads suggest, there was a similar destructive fire, yet to be solved, at the Ohrenberger School in West Roxbury last year.

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Show me the money

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There are a lot of things in our fair City and Commonwealth that are not in as good shape as they once were, but replacing damaged playground equipment takes time and money. Heck, I've seen houses damaged by fire whose roof or siding or whatnot is not fixed for months, owing to the need for cash.

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Why?

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Why?

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Agree 100%. I can't imagine

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Agree 100%. I can't imagine parents and teachers having to explain to elementary school kids why someone would burn down a playground made for children. With summer right around the corner, I hope the children that enjoyed this playground are able to visit others in the vicinity.

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Any cameras? Same person who

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Any cameras? Same person who tried to set the first fire? Is it going to happen again? Serial pyromaniac. This should be taken very seriously. Call me paranoid, fine. I just hope I'm wrong.

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How

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How does that make the person feel to burn something down that kids play on

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Local teens and younger are

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Local teens and younger are the likely culprits, at my middle school we regularly find bottles on Monday morning. We got the city to install more lighting. Cops say they regularly get calls about teens partying there. Some sort of safe rebellion thing, ducks that they are burning things, but that's in the juvie playbook.

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A request from the Sumner

The Roslindale Transcript has passed along a message that was echoed by Roslindale Main Streets (RVMS):

"Sumner school accepting donations of hula hoops, jump ropes, sidewalk chalk after playground destroyed. Drop off at school office"

Also, according to RVMS:

"...the school is working to set up a fund in the near future, and they are working closely with the City of Boston and Boston Public Schools to make sure the fund is created properly."

I'll post more when I hear of additional updates.

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Location