Eight local parks re-open after renovations

This summer, Grand Rapids re-opened many of its parks with the intention of enhancing the recreational opportunities that the city provides. In 2013, Grand Rapids voters approved a seven-year parks measure implementing intentions to renovate all of the city’s parks. This year alone, eight of Grand Rapids’ parks finished their renovations. Cherry Park was the first to be completed on July 31 of this year, and it was followed by the renovation of Westown Commons Park in August. The final six parks were completed prior to Labor Day weekend, all including enhancements chosen by those living in the neighborhoods surrounding each park. Included in these renovations were new playground equipment, new seating, new splashpad water features and various other new amenities that improve the entirety of the parks.

The renovations of all eight park total $6 million in enhancements, meaning that Fuller, Garfield, Highland, Lincoln, Roosevelt and Wilcox Parks have all seen major upgrades that the city hopes will receive positive remarks. At the new park re-opening, New Parks Director David Marquardt explained that all of these improvements show how much work has been put into these parks and that it could not have happened without all of last year’s input from residents living near the parks who participated in design workshops for the re-creation of the parks near their neighborhoods. Though the grand re-opening occurred at Fuller Park only, there was a trolley tour following the ceremony in which the mayor of Grand Rapids and other city leaders saw the enhancements made to the seven remaining renovated parks.

Though these eight park renovations are complete, the parks and recreation department of Grand Rapids is not yet finished with city park updates. There are plans for even more park updates in 2016 for Campau, Camelot, Douglas, Dickinson, Mary Waters and Mulick parks. Similar design processes and upgrades are to be implemented, a project that will no doubt improve the quality of these parks as well.