The City of New Brunswick’s commitment to the revitalization and re-energizing of our parks continues, as New Brunswick City Council considers four proposals that would authorize new improvements in Archibald Park, Buccleuch Park, Feaster Park, Pittman Park and Welton Street Park.
Community Redesign of Feaster and Pittman Parks
A proposed agreement with the Trust for Public Land (TPL) would authorize a community input study and improvements to Feaster Park on Throop Avenue and Pittman Park, located between Handy Street and Seaman Street.
Pending approval of this formal partnership, TPL will be in a position to begin reaching out to the residents of New Brunswick later this summer to solicit input as to what they’d like to see incorporated into Feaster Park and Pittman Park. Those suggestions will be used to help craft improvements to these parks.
This project is to be supported by a three-part funding structure, supplemented by TPL, the City of New Brunswick and Unity Square, which serves as a community steward of the park and a maintaining agency for the community garden there.
Unity Square has pledged $75,000 in funds to support the project, to be matched by an additional $75,000 in Community Block Development Grant (CDBG) funds from the City of New Brunswick. TPL has also committed support to the project.
TPL, a national parks organization with expertise in parks planning and policy is a longtime partner of the City of New Brunswick with regard to our parks, most recently on the Parks Action Plan created in conjunction with the City and Rutgers University.
A New Park on Welton Street
An item on council agenda would authorize the City to begin the process of building a new park on Welton Street, the next phase of the redevelopment of a former abandoned property site into a public space.
Three abandoned houses on Welton Street near the corner of Drift Street were demolished to make way for this proposed park, the amenities of which are planned to include:
- Tables and seating
- Playground fixtures
- Garden and rain garden areas
- New crosswalks
The plan for this park was complemented by community feedback and suggestions that were collected during two public meetings that took place at the end of last year.
Bids will be put out for the project for approximately four weeks, after which time the City anticipates awarding the construction contract to the qualified lowest bidder and setting a timeline for construction to start.
Welton Street Park is anticipated to be completed by summer of 2019.
New Fitness Courts
Items pertaining to the installation of two new “Fitness Courts” are on the council agenda, which would bring new and interactive workout stations for visitors of Alice Jennings Archibald Park and Buccleuch Park to utilize.
The “Fitness Courts,” manufactured by National Fitness Campaign, will be brand new, state-of-the-art and outfitted with specialized exercise equipment targeting different areas of the body in a circuit training layout.
Pending council approval, construction is slated to begin within the next month, starting with a concrete base and followed by the installation of the matting and exercise equipment. It is the goal of the City to have the Fitness Courts completed and operational by mid-summer.
All of these improvements will be discussed during the regular New Brunswick City Council meeting, scheduled to begin at 5:30 p.m. tonight in Council Chambers of City Hall, 78 Bayard Street.
Revitalization and Renewal of City Parks
In 2016, the City’s strategic plan to re-energize its parks system began with the redesign of Recreation Park, a project that completely redesigned this longtime community park and added all new amenities for the public to enjoy, including a skate park, spray park, playgrounds, playing fields and courts and picnic areas.
This was the first step in our City-wide commitment to providing our residents with newly renovated, renewed and enhanced parks throughout our neighborhoods, guided by our New Brunswick Parks Action Plan.
The Plan came about through a partnership among Rutgers, TPL and City officials, yielding a comprehensive review of all 272 acres of New Brunswick’s public parks system, identifying the strengths of our parks system, areas for improvement and trends to consider to keep our parks modern, enticing and welcoming to all.
City implementation of the Parks Action Plan will continue throughout 2018, as we implement our plans for improvements and updates at every City park.
Anyone who wishes to take part in community conversation about our parks is invited to attend a meeting of the New Brunswick Parks and Gardens Commission, which meets at 6:30 p.m. on the second Thursday of each month in Council Chambers of City Hall, 78 Bayard Street.