BIRMINGHAM, Ala. (WIAT) — Regulars of East Lake Park in Birmingham say the condition of the park isn’t what it once was.

“Back then there was cookouts, back then you used to have people jumping in the lake, actually so it was actually a very beautiful place,” Center Point resident Samuel Maxwell explained.

Right now, one of the field goal posts hangs from its side, and the electricity at the park stopped working. That means bathrooms and locker rooms are dark and the lights on the football field and walkways don’t turn on.

“Every time that we put in new lighting it seems that within the first six months or so the copper is typically stolen out of that lighting and the park again goes dark,” said Birmingham District Two City Councilman Hunter Williams.

The Birmingham Park and Recreation Board discussed the issues in a statement to CBS 42:

“The lighting issues at East Lake are due to thieves taking wiring from the poles. It is frustrating because this type behavior—and other forms of vandalism at this and other parks—often  impacts the ability of the community to fully enjoy their area greenspaces. Youth sports, walking and fitness groups, and many other recreational activities are victims to vandalism.  On the brighter side, we are having conversations with Alabama Power to place LED lighting at several parks in the near future, including East Lake.”

Birmingham Park and Recreation Board

Williams told CBS 42 the city will continue funding the park’s maintenance and they hope to find a security solution to prevent ongoing vandalism and burglary.