The Parks Department agreed to several immediate improvements to the little park on Morris Avenue at a meeting on March 8 at the home of Megan Gardner and Tim Merrish. The City will wait for more advice from a meeting of residents planned for April on a number of additional changes to be made this year Summit Neighborhood Association will also spread the word and stands ready to help as requested.

Beth Charlebois of the Parks Department and Councilman Kevin Jackson joined Megan and a few neighbors on Wednesday, March 8 to talk about the needs of the often 0verlooked little park on Morris Avenue, which is in need of some repair and refreshing. Megan and Tim had great pictures for us to work from and Mark Binder, who lives next to the park filled us in on the evolution of the site, which was created as a sunken park (since filled in) back in the 1970s.

Beth agreed to remove some “weed” trees and to look at the condition of the largest tree, which probably needs to be removed. The entire kids area will also get a new carpet of wood chips and a cracked wall will be mended. The kids area will be regraded to eliminate a tripping hazard.

Left for further discussion are where and how to divide the fenced area for toddlers from the front area, which is more of a resting and gathering area for adults and older kids. Other issues include how to improve safety and play value in the toddler area and the appearance and enjoyment of the front.

Megan says, “We are planning another meeting at the park in approx. 3-5 weeks and will send out another notice as to the time/date. At this meeting we can consider choosing additional play features and also the possibility of extending the park to the sidewalk or improving the existing plaza. Your comments/concerns are welcome!! Please tell anyone else who might be interested that this is a happening thing!!!”


Mark Binder · May 4, 2006 at 7:17 pm

Latest news:
Yes! The fence is staying where it is.
The cement blocks are being removed, which is bad news for those of us who feel that they are fun playspaces for kids, and good news for those of us who feel that they are dangerous and ugly. (Actually, everybody agrees that they’re ugly.)

Other items:
Possible new bench.
More woodchips some day.
Removing the dying tree in the back — probably.

No money for other things….

Robyn Noble · April 25, 2006 at 6:56 pm

Please, please leave the fence where it is. Taking it out to the street would be ugly. The trees and the benches remind me of small parks in Europe: a place for older people to stay without the children whirling about them. I agree that the children would be safer farther away from the street.

sna · April 6, 2006 at 12:18 pm

I added this to the SNA events listing.

Mark Binder · April 5, 2006 at 7:28 pm

I want to invite everyone to the upcoming meeting at the park, which is scheduled for April 29 at 3pm in the park.
(In case of rain, please come and gather on my porch at 393 Morris Avenue — right next to the park)

I personally would love to see the graffiti gone ASAP. After that… Make the park even more beautiful and fun.

I also want to weigh in with an important distinction..

This park is not simply a playground. There is a plaza in the front and a park in the back for children ages 2-12 and their families.

It has been the site of birthday parties, cultural events, and most important — hanging out and playing.

The Morris Avenue Pocket Park has a lovely plaza area in the front that has a number of beautiful trees — all of which will be in bloom on the 29th (or shortly thereafter).

I think it would be a shame to fence this area off. The proposal to bring a fence all the way to the sidewalk would replace a space of beauty with an eyesore. It would cut adults off from a cozy resting area, and make children more vulnerable to the street. Right now, if the fence is left open by accident, which happens, there is a good space for a parent to “catch” a child. If it’s on the sidewalk, then the kid can easily run into what is often a very busy street.

Hope to see you on the 29th!

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