Photo by Kirby Neumann-Rea
SIGN at park entrance on Ninth near Eugene reflects the park structure’s community origins. With replacement of the structure a certainty, the community has a new opportunity to partner with the city in the next two years.
As of Friday, July 14, 2017
The next steps on the well-loved, aging Children’s Park play structure start with a community meeting on July 20.
Safety concerns over rotting and damaged posts, railings and other parts led to a one-month closure in May. While the structure is currently re-opened, the recent repairs are only a temporary solution, according to city officials.
Community meeting Thursday, July 20 at 6 p.m. at the Hood River fire hall.
After 24 years, the wooden supports are nearing the end of their safe lifespans, according to Public Works Director Mark Lago. The city hopes to replace the wooden structure with a similarly community designed and built structure in spring 2018. Besides enhancing the safety of the structure, replacement provides opportunities to incorporate newer design elements, use newer materials, and enhance the community legacy of the original structure.
The first steps towards this replacement will be developing a scope-of-work and request for proposals to seek a qualified company to lead the design process.
“As part of this, we’d like the community to provide input on what they most value about the structure, ways to incorporate the community, and more. After a company has been selected, they’ll lead the design process, likely starting late fall,” said City Council Member Megan Saunders
The planning group will be holding a community meeting on Thursday, July 20 at 6 p.m. at the Hood River Fire Hall (1785 Meyer Parkway) to collect input in the scope of work, as well as review current status and future plans in more depth. For more information, contact Saunders at firstname.lastname@example.org.
“This planning effort is still in the early stages, but we do anticipate funding provided by the City of Hood River, Hood River Valley Parks and Recreation District, and community donations working together to create a new structure that builds off and enhances the legacy of the original,” said Saunders. “Rotary has agreed to hold the donations for this project.”
Tax-deductible donations can be made to the Hood River Rotary Foundation, PO Box 1187, Hood River, OR 97031 (be sure to note “for Children’s Park” in your check memo).