Off the Table: Judson Park will Not be Getting Outfitted with New Equipment

February 2, 2012

West U residents will not see any changes to the playground equipment at Judson Park after an offer to raise funds by neighboring residents was pulled off the table.

The Friends of West U Parks recently spent nearly $200,000 on the redevelopment of Judson Park.  After its completion, the city heard from several residents who said the old playground in the five-to-12-year-old play area had more to offer kids than the new equipment.

The city does not have any additional funds to make changes in the park but some 20 residents said they may have been willing to raise the money to install a new feature in the park, Parks and Recreation Director Tim O’Connor said.

Staff proposed that the monkey bars in the park be replaced with a dual adventure climb and a kid force spinner, which was priced at $5,046.

Friends supported changing out the equipment during its December meeting as long as the residents funded the new equipment.

That offer was recently taken off the table and brought back to the Friends board who said on Wednesday that they were not inclined to pay for new equipment at this time.

Friends Chair Leah Ragiel said in the scheme of things it’s not that much money, but she wasn’t sure if replacing the equipment would solve the problem

Several board members said they loved the park and thought that if they changed out the equipment other residents would be unhappy.

“Sometimes people are never going to be happy,” Friends board member Anne Freeman said.

When Judson Park was getting ready to be redone a 15 member subcommittee, made up of Judson Park neighbors and residents, decided on the equipment that would be installed in the park.

O’Connor said that the former play structures were grandfathered and when the equipment was replaced it had to meet national safety standards.

The new equipment in the five-to-12-year-old play area includes a King Peak Boulder/Slide, a triangle beam overhead climber, a comet spinner and a two-bay arch swing.

O’Connor had been working with T.F Harper and Associates LP, a company that specializes in park-recreation and playground equipment, to come up with a new piece of equipment that could go in the park without changing the scope.

InstantNewsWestu Staff

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