City of Duncanville Seeks Residents Input on Parks Development
DUNCANVILLE—Every city needs a plan. A concept that provides idea and a direction that will move the city forward in the future is a must for growth and success. The City of Duncanville is looking at such a plan to determine the future of the city’s Park and Recreation system.
As a result, the city has entered into an agreement with Dunaway Associates, L.P., to prepare the Park Master Plan.
While the process will be guided by City Staff with input from the Parks Department and Board Steering Committee, ultimate approval will come from the City Council. Therefore, public engagement is key. City Staffers believe resident input will help build the future of Parks and Recreation for the Duncanville community.
The next public meeting for citizens to attend is scheduled for Tuesday, January 24, 2017 at 6:00 p.m. The meeting will be held at the D.L. Hopkins, Jr. Senior Center, 206 James Collins Blvd.
At this time the current Park Master Plan is 10 years old.
Duncanville Director of Parks and Recreation Bart Stevenson said, “I am hoping the Duncanville community comes out in force and shares their vision for the parks and recreation system. It is important that the master plan reflect the desires of our citizens. Hopefully through that, the community will support the necessary funding for improvements identified in the new master plan.”
Updating the Park Master Plan
Such Master Plans are usually updated at a minimum every 10 years. This is the time-frame required to apply for Texas Parks and Wildlife grants. The Duncanville City Council approved funding of $75,000 to update the City’s park master plan during the 2016 fiscal year. This was accomplished through the innovation fund. At that time, a three-member Park Master Plan Steering Committee was created. The committee was chosen to oversee the firm selection process.
First, the consulting firm’s scope of service will include an inventory of necessary needs. This includes needs assessment, public input, online surveys, priority rankings and action and implementation plans. The projected costs and Master Plan deliverables are also crucial to success.
There have been a number of parks improvements over the years. Stevenson says that the city’s goal is to keep getting better.
Stevenson said there were many ideas in the current master plan. The top five items mentioned at past public hearings included a skateboard park, multi-use trails, picnic facilities, spray ground/splash park and landscaping.
He said he does not know yet how those priorities will change in relation to the new plan.
New Park Priorities
“The priorities of the parks master plan will eventually be set by the Park Board and City Council following significant community input throughout the development process,” Stevenson explained. “The master plan will be comprehensive in nature and I anticipate it will address park enhancements and improvements in all our parks.”
The goal is to have the Park Master Plan completed in late summer or early fall of 2017; but a timeline is not certain.
“I would anticipate actionable items to be identified in the plan and improvements in the near future,” Stevenson said. However he continued to insist that citizen involvement in critical.
“It is so important for citizens to share their vision for Duncanville parks and recreation,” Stevenson concluded. “The success of the plan is not measured by its contents. but by its success in guiding the city leaders in improving our park system for the enjoyment of our citizens. Through community feedback, this plan will provide realistic priorities and actionable recommendations supported by all.”
Following the upcoming community meetings, a city-wide survey will be available in writing at city facilities and online at www.duncanville.com.