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Burlington City Hall Park Enters Design Phase

A multi-million dollar renovation of Burlington's City Hall Park has been given the green light to take the next step: a design phase that could take six months to finance.
A multi-million dollar renovation of Burlington's City Hall Park has been given the green light to take the next step: a design phase that could take six months to finance.

It's been 3 years coming, the total revamp of Burlington's City Hall Park.

“It's as though we're moving from the 500 foot view to the 50 foot view,” said Doreen Kraft, executive director of Burlington City Arts. “This is when we get to look at a lot of the details everything below the ground as well as above the ground."

This week, the City Council unanimously gave Kraft and the city's Parks & Rec Department permission to move forward to the design phase.

“To take this concept plan now and go out and do design and bid documents so that we can move towards construction,” said Kraft.

The concept plans point to a total price tag of about $2.5 million. That includes up to $200,000 for just designing the new park. Finding the money could take six months.

"It's a substantial renovation that we're proposing. It is the reimagining of our downtown jewel,” said Jesse Bridges, Parks & Rec Director.

Money will be coming from city taxpayers, the Penny for Parks program, which is a voter-approved parks improvement fund.

Some of the plans are recreation-based, like a water play-fountain, a collapsible stage and room for art displays and kiosks. But another side of it is heavy on the infrastructure.

“Storm water features. (The) park currently gets hit pretty hard anytime there's a storm event with high velocity of water coming down,” said Bridges. Some of the damage includes pools of water near the City Hall stairs.

Bridges says the problem can be fixed with landscaping and more drains.

When will you see a change? The hope is for construction to begin on the new downtown destination in the fall of 2016.

The concept plan also changes the traffic flow at City Hall Park.

What's now a wagon-wheel, would change to a more direct path from the marketplace to St. Paul Street.

 

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