Middlesex County News

City Outlines $340K Parks Improvement Project, Plans To Create One More

Fitness stations for a workout circuit have been proposed for two city parks. Credits: Tap Into file photo

NEW BRUNSWICK - City officials today outlined plans to improve to four municipal parks - at a cost of nearly $340,000 - and announced plans for creation of another park on a lot where previously there stood three abandoned homes.

Mayor James Cahill’s office said the city council tonight will consider resolutions allocating $150,000 for an agreement with the private, non-profit agency Trust for Public Land to seek residents’ input about upgrading Feaster and Pitman parks.

If approved by the city council, the Trust would survey city residents, asking what they would like to see in the two parks, and that information that would be incorporated in improvements.

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To fund the agreement, the city would use $75,000 from a federal Community Development Block Grant, and would receive another $75,000 from the city-based private non-profit Unity Square agency.

Trust for Public Land is a California-based agency that has worked nationwide as an expert in developing parks.

Unity Square serves as a community steward of the park Feaster Park on Throop Avenue, and is the agency responsible for maintaining for the community garden there.

The city council tonight will also consider a resolution to seek bids for construction of a park on Welton Street. New Brunswick previously demolished three abandoned homes on Welton Street near Drift Street.

If approved by the council, the city will seek bids for building the park, with could open in the summer of 2019 and would have playground fixtures, tables, seating, lighting and garden areas, according to the mayor’s office. The size of the proposed park was not immediately available today.

Also on the council agenda are resolutions to fund construction of fitness stations for workout circuits at both Alice Jennings Archibald and Buccleuch parks.

One would allocate $64,620 concrete bases for the fitness stations, and a second resolution calls for spending $269,309.50 for matting and equipment.

These steps are the latest in the city's implementation of the long-range New Brunswick Parks Action Plan that was started in 2016 and was developed in partnership with the Trust for Public Land and Rutgers University.

Currently the city as 272 acres of park land. Use and improvements of the park are discussed at the city  Parks and Gardens Commission, which meets at 6:30 p.m. on the second Thursday of each month at city hall. The meetings are open to the public.

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