Beloved recreation center in South Philadelphia closes

- A beloved recreation center in South Philadelphia has closed, and residents are not happy.

Ananda Burton has fond memories growing up in and around the Vare Recreation Center in South Philly.

"Even in the summertime, I was always there swimming or their gymnastics camp or in their arts program. They always had something going," she told FOX 29.

Yet, she had no idea the city suddenly closed it down until FOX 29 told her.

"It's a lot of bad stuff that happened in this neighborhood. A lot of gun violence and drugs," she said. I don't think kids should be out on the streets after school hours. They should have a place to go to like they usually do."

City officials say the 100-year-old facility on the 2600 block of Morris Street was shuttered after structural issues were found in a review of the building.

The Parks and Recreation Department says Vare's playground and ball fields will stay open while officials find a way to fix the inside while pushing the new rebuild Initiative, which targets buildings that may have similar problems.

"You'll start seeing new rec centers, new playgrounds, revitalized public spaces all over our city in the next few months."

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