Over time, the Kings Park Psychiatric Center grew and started to house very troubled individuals. Early in my career, 25 years ago, I visited the Center to represent a man committed there. He had killed his mother in a psychotic rage. I was shocked at what I saw at the Center. Not only were the living conditions horrible but the patients were irretrievably lost. They were so far beyond what we call normal that you couldn't even communicate with them. It was a very disturbing experience.
The Psychiatric Center was closed in 1996 and the State didn't know what to do with the property so it just laid abandoned. Recently, the State decided to turn the place into a "park" -- but without doing anything to the Center. The old buildings are still there; the bars on the windows are still there.
I visited the new "park" Saturday. It has a haunting, eerie atmosphere. Here are some pictures.