Greenfield secures $200,000 grant, needs $50,000 from town to install water playground at Hillside
Hillside Park off Conway St in Greenfield is slated to receive a water park feature. Recorder/Paul Franz Purchase photo reprints »
GREENFIELD — A new splash park should be cooling children off in Hillside Park by late July or early August.
The town has received a $200,000 grant from the state for the project. The town’s taxpayers will have to provide a matching $50,000, according to the terms of the grant, according to Christy Moore, the town’s recreation director.
Mayor William Martin said he will make the request to Town Council, which will have to approve it before the project moves forward.
“We will get the money from the state after July 1, the next fiscal year,” said Moore. The state’s Our Common Backyard Grant program encourages towns and cities across the state to build new playgrounds and spray parks.
Moore said she won’t put the project out to bid until the contract with the state is signed and the council has approved the $50,000.
The project will be overseen by the Recreation Department and Department of Public Works, but a contractor will do all the work, including excavating the area and installing the recirculated water system, which will save money and conserve water.
Moore said the plan is to install a brushed concrete splash park floor so that children don’t slip while getting soaked.
She said the town plans to order the equipment and then have a contractor install it, because it will be less expensive doing it that way.
“If we have a contractor order the equipment, we have to pay them extra,” said Moore.
She said recreation and public works have a diagram of a splash park that is 20 feet wide by 70 feet long with a 5-foot apron around it. She said the Hillside Park Splash Park won’t be quite as big, but she’s hoping it will be close.
Hillside Park sits on 4.97 acres, so Moore said there is plenty of room.
“The splash park will be right next to the playground,” said Moore. “Children will be able to play and then go get cooled off.”
Moore said the splash park will run on a timer. She said children will push an activation bollard to get the water flowing. The water will stay on for however long the town determines and then the bollard will have to be pushed again to reactivate it.
Last year some Hillside Park neighbors complained to the town’s police and Public Safety Commission about illegal activities going on in the recently renovated park, including drug deals and destruction of park benches and tables. They have since rallied town government and neighborhood support to “take back” the park by encouraging more community use, community policing and a neighborhood watch.