The City of Parkville is managing almost three times the park space it had a few years ago, and wants to make sure future plans are laid out.
City officials have opened a public input period for a new master plan effort. They are inviting people to take an online survey about what they would like to see in parks until April 30.
A 2008 park plan for the city included focused on upgrades to the city’s 76-acre English Landing Park, including a new picnic shelter close to the river and a public performance space.
In 2014, Platte Landing Park opened. This space, which is also along the Missouri River, is a 140-acre area owned by Platte County, but managed by the City of Parkville.
The park already includes an off-leash dog area and a walking trail. Tim Blakeslee, assistant to the city administrator in Parkville, says the city is testing a few different ideas for the space and trying to get a handle on what people want to see in their parks.
“We think the public feedback is the most vital part of the process,” Blakeslee said. “These are public parks, and one of Parkville’s greatest amenities. We want to make sure the public has a strong impact on how they are designed for the future.”
Planners have already met with several groups of city leaders to get feedback on a vision for the parks.
Ideas include adding tennis courts or multi-sport courts which could be used for basketball or pickleball. Better access to parks and better parking are under consideration, as well as new sports fields or the creation of a natural wetlands in the new park. An amphitheater on the border of the two large parks is another idea that planners are floating for feedback.
“We’re trying to figure out what people want before we start putting in random amenities at Platte Landing Park, and where the two parks join we want to know what we should do,” Blakeslee said.
The city hosted an informal open house in mid-April and is planning to have preliminary plans for public comment by the middle of summer. They are also inviting comments in an online survey until April 30. The link to that survey is www.suveymonkey.com/parkvilleparks.
The city is also inviting discussion about the master plan process and updates on its Facebook page at www.facebook.com/CityofParkville/ and is using the project hashtag on Twitter of #parkvilleparks.
Arbor Day in Parkville
The Parkville Arbor Day celebration is at 1 p.m. Thursday at English Landing Park.
The event will include the reading of a proclamation by Mayor Nan Johnston; a tree dedication; and the planting of several trees in and around the dog park.
This is the 26th year that Parkville has been named a Tree City USA.
“We do take great pride in all of our parks we have in Parkville. That’s one of the main things that Parkville is known for,” said public works director Alysen Abel. “We have a lot of people outside of even the metro area that come to visit our parks.”
Mayor Johnston’s Arbor Day proclamation urges “…all citizens to celebrate Arbor Day and to support efforts to protect our trees and woodlands, and to plant trees to gladden the heart and promote the well-being of this, and future generations.”
Norma King, Special to The Star