Our last post touched on the high construction cost estimates for the park, and the need for design revision to bring the costs down. Since then we have gone through an additional community workshop and a Community Services Commission meeting. At the last Commission meeting on April 2, the commissioners took the workshop results into consideration as each commissioner drafted their own personal feature list. After a lengthy recess and much number crunching, the lists were blended into a final decision as follows:
- Substitute large mature shade trees for new saplings
- Eliminate the import of large rock boulders
- Use regular coloring on concrete pathways instead of custom sand color
- Eliminate the shipwreck play structure entirely
- Eliminate the climbing wall play structure
- Eliminate the amphitheater
- Eliminate the administration building with trellis
These reductions bring the budget adjustment needed to complete the park down from $1,965,000 to $992,650. The latter figure is the amount the City Council will either pass or reject in a future Council Meeting. The timing on this vote is not set. I’ve made several inquiries to Public Works about this, and the response so far has basically been, ‘We’re still working on it’.
In the mean time, we can help our chances by contacting City Council members and voicing support for the upcoming vote. If they vote yes, we are golden. Let’s build! If they reject the motion, they have the option to scrap the whole project or send it back for more cuts. Given the severity of these latter options, now is a critical time to act. The council will be more willing to vote for the additional funds if the public is showing strong interest. So please, pick up your phone! Draft an email! We made it this far because we made our interests known. We will succeed in our efforts if we continue speaking up. The squeaky wheel gets the grease.
Even though we had to go back and make cuts to the master design, we are confident that the end result is going to be a feature rich park that carries on the AP legacy. We still have the pond and waterfall feature, the climbing forest, the tree house, the concrete slides, sensory garden, lighting for night events, zip-line, climbing poles and stumps, and large amounts of sand play surface. This is a promising start to the newest chapter in Adventure Playground’s history.
Lastly, I want to take time to commend the Community Services Planning Commission for their democratic approach in dealing with these reductions. They all sincerely care about this project and were very diligent in weighing the pros and cons of every feature. It is really a neat experience to see how much AP is valued even at these higher levels of the democratic process.
Now let’s hear some squeaky wheels!
Defenders of Adventure Playground
Long live the AP legacy