About six weeks ago I wrote to this list about the scoping meeting for Bennett Park. The designer has since come up with a draft plan. It won't be possible to do everything needed within the budget currently allocated, so the first phase includes the following:
- paving over the asphalt on the south end with a soft poured surface, so that it's conducive to ball play and bike riding. The outline of the original fort will be re-emphasized. This would also be the area where performances could be held.
- reformatting the lawn so that the big rocks become a natural play feature, and are not fenced off.
- installing a small sprinker in the area behind the field house
- inclusion of a dog pit (not a dog run) in the southwest corner. (Parks is open to discussion of a dog run, but would need an organized dog assn that would be willing to maintain it *and* do the leg work to get buy-in from the surrounding buildings. So far no such group exists.)
The plans for this phase will be presented at the CB12 parks meeting on Tuesday.
Future plans call for re-doing the field house so that there's storage for things like Harvest Fest supplies, and locating it where it will provide bathroom access for seniors *and* improve sight lines within the playground. The playground area will be enlarged, and the hope is to get funding to have unique play euqipment installed (preferably with a fort theme, in keeping with the historic nature of the park).
For those who have a keen interest in how this all unfolds, perhaps it is time to revive Friends of Bennett Park. The equipment at Bennett is in relatively good shape, so that's not going to be the #1 priority for Parks (nor should it be, given the sad shape of some other parks). However, if we want to keep this *a* priority and moving along in the capital queue, we'll need to advocate for it. I've done Friends groups before, so if there are folks who want to work on this, email me. I'd be glad to facilitate an initial meeting, and introduce you to the people you need to know.