New Lakewood park proposed

·2 min read

Plans have been launched for a new park in Lakewood Meadows, but how it will be funded is up in the air.

The park plan was presented to town council on March 17 by representatives of Lakewood of Strathmore, to secure funding for the project.

The park is being called Brave Park to recognize historic people and leaders alongside today’s frontline workers and emergency services personnel, explained Scott Silva, Lakewood of Strathmore’s director of sales and marketing.

“Part of the idea of this park is really to pay honour to these heroes – these pillars of our community,” he said.

Brave Park would feature a playground, programmable fields and a monument to these pillars. The half-acre playground has been designed, but specifics were not presented in the meeting. The project is to be locally sourced, including production, manufacturing, design and contracting, said Silva.

According to Neal Coulter, Lakewood developer, the park would help attract residents to the community which currently lacks a playground.

“The kids are there on a daily basis, throwing rocks at each other for their enjoyment right now,” he said.

The park is projected to cost $410,150. Silva said the Lakewood representatives asked town council to consider funding this cost entirely. But just the half-acre playground could be developed first for under $200,000, said Coulter, later in the meeting.

Using public money to pay for the park would be a departure from past policy. Developers are expected to construct and install the first playground in their development, said Jim Simpson, the town’s interim director of infrastructure, operations and development services. Second and third playgrounds in a community may be considered for receiving town funds, he added.

Councillor Denise Peterson suggested other groups, such as health care workers, Wheatland and Adjacent Districts Emergency Medical Services (WADEMSA), firefighters and municipal workers, could help fundraise for the park.

“I know with community involvement that this (project) is definitely doable, and the price is very commensurate with anything that I’ve ever worked on in the past” she said.

Lakewood has started engaging residents to move towards a community-based committee on the park, said Silva.

Town council accepted the presentation for administration. It then passed a motion directing administration to return with a report detailing how to respond to the funding request. The report will be presented alongside an update from Lakewood’s representatives at a future meeting.

Sean Feagan, Local Journalism Initiative Reporter, Strathmore Times