One of Denver’s “park deserts” will receive a little oasis — literally, it will have one of those fountains that splashes water around — but not for another year and a half.
The Denver City Council is poised to approve a $650,000 contract next Monday that will fund the design and construction of a park at 29th Avenue and Fairfax Street. Shovels dig in about a year from now, and the park will take nine or 10 months to finish, said Jeru Parikh, senior landscape architect with Denver Parks and Recreation.
At just 125 feet by 125 feet, it’s a pretty small slice of green, but the park will make a difference in one of Denver’s more park-sparse neighborhoods, Parikh said. Denver’s “Game Plan” for parks labels North Park Hill a “high-priority” area because of the few parks in walking distance from residents.
The pocket park has been wrapped up in a development debate. Parks and Rec originally bought a slice of land from Xcel Energy for the park, but swapped that land with a plot owned by developer HM Capital across the street. HM Capital donated $650,000 for the park — which is a public park on public land — in exchange for the right to have it next to its impending mixed-use development.
Here’s what residents can expect:
- A playground with swings, a sandy play area, something called a Wallhola that resembles a vertical jungle gym with a slide
- An interactive water-spray area
- Shade shelter with picnic tables and grills
- Game tables and seating areas
- A grass lawn with shade trees and plantings
- An art wall to showcase the Park Hill neighborhood’s history
I’m just going to be that guy who says things aren’t like they used to be because this little park has some features that are far from the splinter-ridden fortresses I grew up running around.