City Making 'Good Progress' on All-Abilities Playground

The new All-Abilities Playground will open this summer, but the exact date is still up in the air.

Parks and Recreation Director Darren Dunkle said the playground is very close to opening, however no date has been determined.

“We looked at some possibilities, but nothing has been put in stone yet,” he said.

Dunkle said a firm date can be set once all the parts are in Washington.

“The biggest thing is, there’s still a couple of pieces that are on order,” he said. “It all depends on when that comes in.”

Dunkle said the ship date for the missing pieces is currently set for June 30.

The missing pieces are a result of alterations that had to be made after the design period. Dunkle said the retaining wall design had to change. It was built differently than in the original plans and, as a result, some of the ramps in the original design no longer work.

Once the city actually gets the missing parts, Dunkle said it shouldn’t take long for installation.

“As soon as those other parts get in, it should only take us a day or two to get them in,” he said. “Then all we will need to do is the tile work around that.”

City staff met last week to determine a potential opening date. Dunkle said several dates were discussed, but nothing was formally decided.

“Right now we don’t want to tell the public, ‘It’s opening on this date,’ and then, all of the sudden, something happens and we all look stupid,” Dunkle said.

Based on the amount of work left, Dunkle said a mid-July opening is a possibility.

“It could open before then, but that’s what we’re looking for at this point,” Dunkle said.

Despite the missing parts, the playground is making significant strides.

“We’re making some good progress on it,” Dunkle said. “The rain did set us back a bit. We can’t put the tiles down in the rain because the glue wouldn’t set.”

Dunkle said along with placing the tiles, city staff is working on landscaping around the playground.

The playground has been in the works for several years. Plans were discussed for the park, which is partially funded by the Washington Jaycees, in late 2011. The official groundbreaking for the project was April 2, 2012.