Essex County News

Construction Underway for Nautical Playground at South Mountain Recreation Complex in West Orange

Essex County Executive Joe DiVincenzo announces construction of the Nautical Playground near the paddle boat area at South Mountain Recreation Complex is underway and expected to be completed by the end of the Summer. Joining the Executive are West Orange Planning Board Council Liaison Susan McCartney (to the left of Joe D.) and and West Orange Councilman Victor Cirilo, left. Credits: Glen Frieson

WEST ORANGE, NJ - Essex County Executive Joe DiVincenzo announced on May 29 that plans are underway to develop a children’s playground near the Paddle Boat and Pavilion area at the Essex County South Mountain Recreation Complex. 

“As the Council Liaison to the Planning Board, we continue to see projects proposed by the County Executive that are getting more fun,” West Orange Council President Susan McCartney said.

“We really appreciate all the improvements the County has made at this complex. It has really made a tremendous difference,” noted West Orange Councilman Victor Cirilo.

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The playground will be adjacent to the paddle boat area with 24 different pieces of playground equipment atop a rubberized safety surface. The playground will be fenced and stamped concrete pathways will link the playground to the picnic area, paddle boating and pathway around the reservoir.

Construction on the site has already begun and is expected to be completed by the end of the summer.

The process was not without concerns from Essex County residents that opposed the simultaneous construction of a dog park and the playground, citing environmental issues including the removal of several old growth trees. The plans for the dog park were ultimately put on hold but the county chose to move forward with the playground.

French and Parrello from Wall received a $74,500 contract to design the playground. Beaver Electric Company from Roseland was awarded a publicly bid contract for $1,242,970 to perform the construction. 


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