City Council Briefed on Plan to Implement Inclusive Playground
On Oct 15, 2018, the Richardson City Council and City Managers Office was briefed on the status of Cottonwood Park Inclusive Playground. Lori Smeby, Parks Department Director, presented the plan of action asking the Council to consider agenda items to approve the purchase of playground equipment and the restroom on Oct 22, 2018; and to approve the purchase of playground installation on November 5, 2018. The target for completion of the Inclusive Playground is April 2019.
Additional information can be found in the official City of Richardson press release here.
The contractor provided updated artist concepts for display at the October 15, Council Meeting. (see below). The playground will be built within the existing foot print of the old playground. No trees will be removed in the process, thus the natural beauty of Cottonwood Park will shine through. The fence in these artist concept will be a four foot high wrought iron fence. The color in this rendition and equipment portrays the final design.
Click on the “arrow” below to see a video “fly-through” of the inclusive playground.
Inclusive Playground Fundraising is On Track for Implementation
Next $12,000 in Donations by Dec 15,2018 may be Matched by
Rees-Jones Foundation – Dollar-for-Dollar
Where Can I Donate?
After combining the baseline and enhancements identified, the projected cost for the Inclusive Playground at Cottonwood Park increased from $450,000 to $938,918. Richardson East Rotary Club raised it’s goal to $500,000 to help bridge the gap between the City bond funds of $200,000 and City Capital Improvement fund requirements to complete the inclusive playground. While we are seeking larger donations from corporations and foundations, there is no donation too small. Donations of all sizes contribute to the playground’s success. You may make your tax deductible donation through the Richardson East Rotary Foundation by clicking button below.
We’re rapidly closing the gap to reach our fund raising goal. In any case, we’ll close fund raising on Dec 31st and focus on doing the best job possible in maximizing the “play value” with the funds we have. If you drive by Cottonwood park, you’ll see that the play ground equipment has all been removed and we’re moving forward with the build. Ground breaking is planned for January 13th at 2:00 pm. You’re welcome to attend. There will be an opportunity for community members to come forward and “move some dirt” if they desire.
If notice the containers at the park, that’s the playground equipment. Contracts for the construction crew should be signed before Christmas.
What’s Changed Since August 2018?
We’re excited to report that the $250,000 fundraising goal set almost a year and a half ago has been far exceeded. Since August 2018, several substantial donations have been received bringing the Richardson East Rotary Club total fundraising to $429,884 (Oct 8, 2018). Those donations include a naming rights gift of $100,000 from Charles and Ann Eisemann, the Eisemann’s also made a $25,000 gift to be applied to the inclusive restroom near the playground. The Rees-Jones foundation made a $50,000 matching funds grant.
Enhancements: In August when the initial fundraising goal was essentially complete, we began to define the enhancements identified by the inclusive playground team and the inputs from citizens that reviewed the interim concepts on August 9th. Those enhancements included:
- Expanding playground footprint to provide for greater inclusive access through additional equipment and increased play value
- Professional installation
- Additional shade features
- Full poured in place surface
- Fencing to control exit points for children
- Additional designated handicap parking spaces
- Fully accessible family restroom with reinforced changing table in close proximity to the playground
Those enhancements increased the project budget to $935,918. The City reassessed their commitments and Richardson East Rotary Club committed to raise $500,000. Almost $35,000 of the Reese-Jones foundation matching grant is still available to match new donations, all donations between now and Dec 15th will be matched to the extent matching funds are available.
The Inclusive Playground team thanks everyone for their support and donations. We are so close!!!