Over the past few weeks we have been in frequent contact with representatives from the Parks Department about a few projects in Roslindale. Between those conversations and today’s release of the city’s FY17 recommended budget we have a few updates on some projects we have been advocating for.
The FY17 recommended budget allocates $910,000 to the Fallon Field playground renovation, an increase of $150,000 over the amount listed in the FY16 budget. This increase reflects the city’s commitment to moving forward with the project despite receiving construction bids that were considerably higher than expected. According to the project manager, Cathy Baker-Eclipse, construction is expected to begin around May 1, and the expanded budget will allow for the playground to closely follow the final design that was presented last summer.
The Healy Field playground budget remains at $650,000 in the recommended budget. This project is on schedule to begin construction in the fall, although that timeline could change depending on how the Fallon Field renovations proceed. Those who were present at the last community meeting for the Healy Field renovations will recall that there were still design details to be finalized, and the Parks Department expects to have an update next month.
Mount Hope Street Parcel
In previous updates we have discussed the possibility of creating play opportunities at vacant lots owned by the Department of Neighborhood Development. We are pleased to report that the Parks Department has taken ownership of a small wedge-shaped parcel at the corner of Mount Hope Street and Hyde Park Avenue. The recommended budget includes a $50,000 allocation to “study and implement strategies that will transform the DND parcel into a park.” It is not yet clear how that project will proceed, but this is a great first step and we hope to stay involved and help the community find a terrific use for this new park.
Another local park we have shown interest in is Pagel Playground, located between Hyde Park Avenue and the railroad tracks just north of the Mount Hope Street Parcel. While there is no money in the budget proposal for a capital project at this park, we have learned from the Parks Department that there is an opportunity to introduce a new play element at this park in the near future. We cannot yet share too many details about this project, but we will be sure to post updates as soon as we can.