During the Great Recession, the City cut back on so many services. The upkeep and modernization of our city parks was one of the early cuts on the expenditure chopping block. For the past decade, we’ve tried mostly to keep the parks mowed and the equipment functional, but it has been predominately a passive park system. It’s there if you want to use it.
As revenues slowly improve over time, we’re working on getting our parks back in top form again. As you use the parks this year, you should see visible improvements; some large, some smaller, to your favorite city parks. Below are some of the projects we are working on this year.
We are also working on a modest recreation program for this summer. It will be limited to small periods of summer time and at limited parks, but it’s our first expenditures on recreation in over a decade. Our hope is to slowly expand in each future year’s budget to offer better park experiences and more recreational opportunities throughout the city each year moving forward.
Smith Park: New playground equipment (now open!), Earth Day activities park-wide including: painting signs, and electric boxes, painting the fence at playground equipment, planting new pollinator landscape beds, litter removal around pond and throughout the park, landscape beds clean up, and mulching.
Douglass Park: Pilot donated funding for two new shade canopies for the picnic areas by the splash pad.
Play toys repaired at a number of parks, including Damon, Sherman, and Gardner.
Sunset Park: New play equipment, site amenities and furnishings, with the upcoming construction of the GI Basin.
Earth Day activities coming up in parks:
Lefferson Park: Litter pickup, mulch trees along Breiel, paint signs, clean up playground (10)
Douglass Park: Trash removal, pick up sticks
Douglass Park Garden: Litter pickup, sign painting, cleanup community center area and paint indoor or outdoor rooms
Gardner Park: Trash removal along tree line
Bull’s Run: Work with staff to clean up throughout the nature preserve
Armbruster Nature Preserve: Trash removal end of Autumn Dr., pick up sticks along trail and at left side of road, plant bed cleanup at sign, honeysuckle removal
Bicentennial Commons: Clean up along the river bank
Hazardous trees have been removed from multiple parks. Grounds will be planting approximately 30 trees throughout a number of parks this upcoming year as well.
Parks is constantly making repairs to play equipment, replacing nets, and cleaning up the parks.