Residents to pick which park plan they prefer for Clarke House Park

By Wesley LeBlanc
Posted 1/6/21

CUTLINE: The Town of Orange Park is asking residents to complete a survey to let the town know which of three different playground proposals for the Clarke House Park they prefer.

ORANGE PARK – …

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Residents to pick which park plan they prefer for Clarke House Park

Posted

CUTLINE: The Town of Orange Park is asking residents to complete a survey to let the town know which of three different playground proposals for the Clarke House Park they prefer.

ORANGE PARK – The town is surveying residents about a new playground at the Clarke House Park.

The Clarke House Park is an Orange Park staple and it could receive a major facelift in the form of slides, swings and more next year. The town is asking residents to help it decide which of the proposals it likes on the Town of Orange Park’s Facebook page. The town wants as much input as possible since the price tag could be as high as $700,000.

“We received five proposals for a new playground at Clarke House Park,” the town’s Facebook post reads. “The Selection Committee has determined a shortlist of firms they wish to invite to a future meeting [TBD]. The Committee would like to gather residents' feedback on the concept drawings submitted by the top three firms.”

Orange Park town manager Sarah Campbell said the three proposals range from $669,000 to $699,000, which works perfectly because the town council budged $700,000 for the playground. The town is surveying residents from three different firms: Leathers, Kompan and Playmore. Each firm turned in a playground proposal quite unique from the rest with Leathers opting for the classic wooden-looking playground, Kompan going for a more modern look and Playmore somewhere in between with more abstract standalone features.

The survey asks residents to share feedback on the proposal drawings, what ages their children are, what their gender and age is, and where they live. Campbell said these surveys will help the Culture and Recreation Committee make a recommendation to the town council and then the town council will make the decision on either Jan. 19 or Feb. 2. The committee will invite the three firms to pitch their playground to the committee on Jan. 11 before a recommendation is sent to the council. The proposals estimate that the playground concepts would take three to six months to create, according to Campbell.

The surveys are anonymous, but the Facebook post about the surveys has more than 80 comments from residents speaking what they hope to see. The biggest question is whether the playground retains the shade currently at the park.

“Can we please leave some trees?” Rhonda Jett asked. “That’s what made this park so great: shade for the parents and [it] kept the equipment cooled.”

Others brought up the same point, and it’s clear residents want the trees currently at the park to remain. Some residents, like Steven Kuhn, suggested a sandbox area be included alongside a mini splash park for the hot summer days.

Another popular suggestion was the inclusion of rubber pieces on the floor like what’s be installed at the Ronnie Van Zant park. Robert Morris said this prevents cats from using the floor as a litter area like strays might do with a sand box.

The survey is still live on the Town of Orange Park Facebook page, and the town encourages anyone who believes they might use the park to respond, even if they don’t live in Orange Park.

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