Last night about 40 residents of the neighborhoods surrounding Prospect Park got together to discuss what we can do to improve our park. We met at Adams School and then divided into two groups to walk the park. After the walk we discussed our findings and started making a list of potential projects. I think the best thing that came from the meeting was seeing 40 people that want to see more activity in the park which is mostly used for its basketball courts.
Prospect Park is a really nice park with multiple sections which have their own feeling. Here are some of our observations, If you have some more please comment. I should say that at the Prospect Park Summit #1 there were safety concerns expressed which have been discussed and there is a plan in place.
ALL AROUND THE PARK
Trash Cans – The #1 observation from both groups centered around the lack of Trash Cans and the multiple styles of trash cans in the park. There was also interest expressed in having a recycle bin since there is a lot of bottled water consumed at the basketball court.
Signage – We need to get signs printed and placed with the rules of the park and reservation procedures for the pavilions. Sometimes people need to be reminded what acceptable behavior is.
Paint – The pavilions and some of the play structures need to be painted.
Grills – The grills are well used and for the most part are in pretty bad shape. Better grills would probably promote even more use.
Trampled Ground – there are a lot of areas around the park which used to be grass but because of use the areas are just dirt. It was suggested that we find some sort of walkable material besides grass to cover these areas. Crushed Granite was suggested as the best option, now we need a fund raiser.
Trees – Cutting the suckers off the trees and trimming the dead branches
Dog Po Stations – Have a ‘pick up’ station around the park although it was noted that dog po doesn’t seem to be a large issue.
Zombies – It was discussed that since the park was built on a cemetery we should have some Zombie Security Stations around the park. It was discussed that when dealing with Zombies it is very important to stop the early risers before they infect more people and multiply.
The basketball courts are used constantly and draw 50 people a night to the park. Some of these folks participate in less-than-proper behavior and are responsible for an amazing amount of trash. There is a small group that wants the basketball courts removed but the primary thought is to discuss the issues with the folks that play on the court.
As a maintenance issue we didn’t see a lot of problems except the lower hoops are bent. I didn’t notice if there are markings on the courts but if there aren’t I think they should be painted. We should ask those that play to paint the markings which will give them a sense of stewardship.
The pavilion could use a new coat of paint and will need consistent cleaning during the summer. The Pavilion also needs signs.
The playground is in desperate need of new mulch. In most places the underlying material is exposed. There was also talk that the mulch needs to be brought up to the level of the surrounding railroad ties to avoid a trip hazzardThis is an issue which will call for a joint purchase by the Ypsilanti School Board (the park is used as the Adams School Playground) and the Ypsilanti DPS. We will then need a herd of volunteers to spread the mulch.
Sandbox area – there was once a sandbox but it is now just hard dirt. The remains of a kids backhoe is still there and it is just a dangerous pole in the ground which needs to be removed.
Luna lake is its own monster with a day dedicated to its Spring Maintenance.
The Purple Martin House – there is a purple martin house that was placed on a pole sometime in the long ago past. The house is in disrepair and is mostly fallen down. It is time to replace.
There is a water spigot that comes out of the ground and is surrounded by two cut sign posts (to protect from the mower). The posts seem dangerous and are ugly – the thought is to remove the spigot if it is not used or to do something to make it look better. We could probably raise the spigot and surround it with some of the rocks around the lake.
The Bench near Luna Lake is falling backwards and needs to be reset. There should probably be more sitting places around the ‘Luna Lake’ since it should be a nice focal point of the park
The cannon looks pretty good but may need a coat of paint in the future
There is a fenced in tennis court at Prospect Park. The issue is that there is no, and has been no, net on the court for years. It was commented that the court is used for roller hockey. There were two thoughts on this one is to put up a net for tennis on the court and the other is to put up a net and switch it over to roller hockey. Either way there is a ‘practice’ board that should be repaired and there is a hole in the fence that needs to be fixed.
The Tball field is in a huge state of disrepair. The field needs to be re graded with the appropriate material. We need bases or the ability for people to bring their own. The backstop has a hole that needs to be repaired. If we get people using the field it was suggested we need a second set of bleachers.
Bathrooms – It was stated that the bathrooms were repaired in 2006 but were quickly destroyed. There was very strong support that the bathrooms be repaired but used only on a rental basis. The YMCA said they need bathrooms to conduct a day camp and bathrooms are needed if people want to reserve the pavilion for group or family functions.
Light Behind the pavilion – There is a security light which needs to be replaced behind the pavilion.
There was talk of putting a mural on the pavilion. I have seen research that if there is artwork on a building it is less likely to have graffiti sprayed on it. There are a lot of groups in the city that would like to see spaces opened for public artwork.
Driveway – There is a parking lot but also a service road that leads to the pavilion. People consistently use the service drive to drive into the park which isn’t allowed. The issue of the service road was blamed on the DPS not locking a chain that leads to the service road.
Signs and Trash cans
Activities — It was discussed that we need more activities in the park. I suggested a drop-in kick ball game at a set time each week. Others talked about having concerts in the park.
A web page — We had volunteers that offered to create a web page with a list of potential projects which people could write what they have accomplished or what they are planning to do. This site should be a full forum about the park where people can report security issues, maintenance issues, and other observations.