A new rendering from Vortex shows an  updated look at the splash pad that will be  installed at Oxford/Merchants Park in 2020.

A new rendering from Vortex shows an updated look at the splash pad that will be installed at Oxford/Merchants Park in 2020.

Rendering provided by Theresa McArleton


Local recreation officials detail park projects for 2020

By: Mike Koury | C&G Newspapers | Published January 27, 2020

 A concept rendering of Wanda Park  by Hamilton Anderson Associates shows updates including a walking path, a new pavilion, benches and new landscaping.

A concept rendering of Wanda Park by Hamilton Anderson Associates shows updates including a walking path, a new pavilion, benches and new landscaping.

Rendering provided by LaReina Wheeler

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OAKLAND COUNTY — They might not be getting much attention now, but the parks in Ferndale, Berkley, Huntington Woods and Pleasant Ridge soon will after the winter season ends.

As the residents of each city wait out the snowy weather to enjoy their nearby parks, the cities themselves are working on plans to improve some of the parks.


Ferndale
Ferndale Parks and Recreation Director LaReina Wheeler said the city is planning three park projects at the moment. The projects would be located at Geary, Wanda and Schiffer parks.

Geary Park would see the installation of a walking path, outdoor fitness equipment, benches, trash cans and receptacles. Wheeler noted that improvements at Geary would utilize monies from a Michigan Department of Natural Resources grant and a “green skate park grant” from the Tony Hawk Foundation. This money would help with installing bioswales and improving landscaping on the site.

At Wanda Park, Wheeler said, the city will be adding walking paths, a new pavilion, water fountains, benches and new landscaping. Schiffer Park also will see its landscaping improved, along with the addition of seat platforms, custom planter boxes, decorative pavers and a turf area. The goal is to start all the projects in the spring.

“We’re planning to expand Schiffer, so it’ll be a larger park,” Wheeler said.


Huntington Woods
Huntington Woods Parks and Recreation Director Mary Gustafson mentioned two parks that are up for improvements in 2020: Reynolds and Coolidge/Elgin parks

Coolidge/Elgin Park, Gustafson said, has some outdated equipment that will be replaced; design options currently are being discussed. Reynolds Park will see the creation of a “multigenerational park” with the addition of an outdoor fitness space.

“It’ll have seven exercise stations with benches, landscaping and a new walkway through the park,” she said. “This equipment’s designed for 14-year-olds through seniors. So we’re trying to touch all bases with this.”

Funding for Reynolds Park will be offset with the funds from the Huntington Woods Men’s Club auction this year. Gustafson said the aim is to complete both projects this year, but Reynolds most likely will be started first in the late spring or early summer.


Pleasant Ridge and Berkley
Pleasant Ridge has seen some of its parks receive improvements over the last couple of years. Because of that, Assistant Recreation Director Greg Calbeck said, there currently aren’t plans right now to do anything at the parks. Calbeck described the city as being in a holding pattern at the moment.

The city of Berkley’s big project for 2020 is overhauling Oxford/Merchants Park, an area that’s been targeted for improvements for several years.

Parks and Recreation Director Theresa McArleton said the project, which is both grant funded and city funded, is slated to start in the spring. The park will receive restrooms, a walkway, a splash pad and new play equipment.

Outside of Oxford/Merchants, McArleton said the department wants to update the play equipment at either Jaycee or Tot Lot parks later in the year.

“Originally, we had slated for Jaycee Park to get new play equipment,” she said. “We may be adjusting that, pushing that back, because that play equipment is in quite good shape. Tot Lot, we think we might want to update sooner. So right now we’re deciding between (which) one of them will have updated play equipment beginning summer/fall 2020, depending on City Council’s final approval, but it’s in the capital plan right now.”

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