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Columbia City Council votes on Douglass Park Improvement project

UPDATE, 9:00 p.m. 2/15/16: The Columbia City Council approved improvements to Douglass Park Monday evening.

ORIGINAL STORY: Douglass Park could soon be home to a new skate spot, shelters, new playground equipment, and additional park lighting.

The 6.8 acres of Douglass Park is in need of improvements since it’s been nearly almost twenty years from the last major upgrade that was done to the park.

The Parks and Recreation Department is requesting approval of an ordinance authorizing the Douglass Park phase two Improvements project. The Park staffis proposing to make a variety of improvements to the park, including the construction of a two new shelters, replacing the existing playground, new constructionof a skate spot and improvements on park lighting and ADA walkways.

In 2013, the City Council approved phase one improvements, which included an outdoor amphitheater, new landscaping, increased green space, park signage,and additional walkways.

Parks and Recreation Director Mike Griggs told ABC 17 that this improvement is needed, but it was also something that the neighborhood wanted.

One of the most important features that the Department hopes to add is a brand new skate park, for residents and kids to use… “We did a great meeting with DouglassHigh Schoolstudents and a lot of the kids in the neighborhood. We were really surprisedto hear about skateboarding, and how it was such a popular activity. Even during school breaks, they (students) were out there even on the basketball courtsskateboarding,” Griggs said.

The total budget is $225,000 which will be funded by the 2015 Park Sales Tax that was passed by voters.

The main goal according to Griggs is “for the park to become more family oriented, to revitalize the park back to the 80’s and 90’s when the park was more of
a family gathering spot.”

The City Council is expected to vote Monday, February 15th at 7pm.

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