Stone Park Better Block a Success!

Update:  Download the latest progress report for the W. W. Stone Park  Improvements 171103_progressreport

On April 1, 2017, Kings Highway Conservation District neighbors teamed up with Team Better Block, a consulting firm born in Oak Cliff out of the original Better Block project back in 2010, to conduct a rapid planning effort with neighborhood volunteers and showcase how W. W. Stone Park could be improved using best practice place-making tools called Stone Park Better Block.

Neighbors first gathered back on February 18th for a walk and talk of the space to discuss their ideas and gather feedback for the effort.

Team Better Block then created a concept plan that was reviewed and vetted by neighbors, and formulated into a build plan for the purpose of constructing pop up amenities for the April 1st transformation event.

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Volunteers gave their time and Team Better Block and KHCD partially funded building a fence, mural, crosswalks, bicycle parking, table, little library, seating, games, donated toys and programmed the morning with food, beverages, and music from a neighborhood teenage band and honored a former long-time neighbor.

Border Fence

Parents wanted the space to feel safer from the busy street so they could relax a bit more while their children played.

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Bicycle Rack

Many residents ride their bicycles throughout the neighborhood and city, and wanted parking installed.

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Crosswalks

Temporary crosswalks were painted to provide better, safer access to the park from two different places on Edgefield.

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Toddler Table

The benches currently installed in the park are great, but lack a table to enable eating your lunch, an art project, or any activity for children and adults might partake in while enjoying the park.

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Little Library

By chance, an official Little Library was acquired through a donation from the family of Catherine Belle Seaman, a lovely and active woman who had grown up and lived in the neighborhood most of her life.

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Space Mural

A local neighbor and artist created a temporary galaxy mural for the day.  Volunteers are working on a proposal to submit to the cities Cultural Affairs department to implement a future mural on the concrete slab at the park.

 

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On April 1, 2017, the day’s events kicked off with a dedication of a the little library in honor of Catherine Belle Seaman, who grow up on Winnetka and loves to read stories.  Here’s some video of her speech at the event:

Many new and old neighbors came out to see the temporary changes, and provided feedback in a survey distributed at the event.  Here are several photos from the day:

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After the event, and over the past several months, a small and dedicated group of volunteers worked with the Parks department to submit a needs list for review by park staff.  After their review, KHCD was awarded with the creation of a pilot program for all of the new improvements.  Currently, a progress summary report has been created and will be presented at the next quarterly meeting on November 9th.

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