NEW YORK (Feb. 28, 2008) — The Trust for Public Land, a nationwide land conservation organization, has announced it no longer will use recycled rubber turf in the system of playgrounds it is establishing for the City of New York.
The group — dedicated to establishing parks, community gardens and other land for public use — is concerned about recent reports suggesting that heavy metals and volatile organic compounds might leach from the recycled rubber infill over time, according to Troy Farmer, the trust's marketing and public affairs manager in its Mid-Atlantic Regional Office.
The Trust for Public Land has used rubber turf in 18 playgrounds around New York City so far, and will use it in two more currently under construction but will switch to tufted nylon for the remaining two dozen or so that are projected for construction, Farmer said.
Concerns over rubber turf emanate largely from a study done in Connecticut that was flawed from its inception, according to Michael Blumenthal, vice president, environmental and resource recovery at the Rubber Manufacturers Association.
Studies from Denmark, Sweden and the Netherlands demonstrate that rubber infill in playgrounds presents no health hazards, he said.