09/23/05 — Final vision of new park is drafted

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Final vision of new park is drafted

By Kenneth Fine
Published in News on September 23, 2005 1:49 PM

Gunshots rang out as Shandra Jones strolled through Stoney Creek Park in the early evening years ago. For her and many other residents, crime and drugs are what they remember about the park.

"To this day, I don't know what happened," Ms. Jones said. "And I have not been back since."

Today, bulldozers and other heavy machinery clear away those bad memories as trees fall, and trails are torn, and a rehabilitation begins.

Members of the Stoney Creek Park Development Committee met Thursday to draft their final vision of the new Stoney Creek Greenspace. Their draft will then be sent to Kimley-Horn and Associates, the landscape design firm that will bring those plans to life.

For now, those plans do not include a basketball court. There is no playground equipment penciled in either.

The committee members want a place where residents can walk or bike, enjoy a quiet moment of reflection or watch a few birds.

They said the park should educate visitors, provide a place for recreation and conserve the natural setting. Additionally, they see the project as an opportunity for community members to take care of the park once it is completed.

"We plan on the city doing a lot of the initial work," City Manager Joe Huffman said. "But we're hoping local groups will take an interest in maintaining the beauty of the area."

The city also wants to know what the community thinks about the Stoney Creek plan.

A public forum is scheduled with the park committee and Kimley-Horn representatives for 7 p.m. Oct. 18 at the Herman Park Center. Although committee members will stick to their basic plan for the park, they want to hear how residents would like to see that vision realized.

Other ideas the committee is considering include an education-focused park with informational kiosks, benches made from recycled material and garden areas for children. A nine-hole golf course, using Frisbees rather than golf balls, is also being considered.