Councillor Shad Qadri announced plans for a splash pad for Deer Run Park in his weekly newsletter this week.
The $283,000 project would be funded from Stittsville’s cash-in-lieu of parkland fund. For new developments in the City of Ottawa, developers have the option to either build a park, or pay into the cash-in-lieu fund. The money can be used at the councillor’s discretion towards building and maintaining parks and equipment. This project would eat up just over half of the total that’s currently in the fund.
Qadri says that the idea for a splash pad came from residents who responded to his request for park improvements in the ward. The final design isn’t finished but the plan is to have three activity zones for different ages: toddler play, family play and a more active zone for older children.
Qadri says he’s given a heads up to nearby residents and a few neighbours have expressed concerns about a lack of parking nearby. He’s set up a consultation meeting for Thursday, January 26 at 7:00pm at the Pretty Street Community Centre to discuss the plan.
I see this as a positive improvement to the park,” he wrote. “However, I want to ensure that residents who live around the park are also supportive of this plan before moving forward with the project.”
Qadri wrote that Deer Run Park is a good location for the splash pad because it has existing water infrastructure and other amenities that will compliment the splash pad. “The flat topography and open space allows for straight forward construction with little disturbance to existing park features and the size of the splash pad area is small enough that an open space free play zone will remain. There is also no requirement for any removal of trees to accommodate the new park feature. There are many other parks that I know residents would also like to see a splash pad installed but it is important to have the existing water service infrastructure to make such a project economically viable,” he wrote.
As for the parking concerns, Qadri wrote: “Deer Run Park was selected for its central location within the community to ensure all residents in the neighbourhood have easy walking distance to the splash pad. In the City’s experience, splash pads do not typically draw large crowds of people from outside the immediate area unless they are part of a destination attraction as they are with our district parks. The City does have numerous examples of splash pads that have been installed in neighbourhood parks across the City that do not have onsite parking and they have not received complaints about increased traffic or parking issues. A few examples of neighbourhood parks with splash pads and no on-site parking in Stittsville include Upcountry Park and Bandmaster Park. I am not aware of having concerns from either of these parks with respect to people parking on the streets to access the splash pad.”
This project would bring Stittsville’s total number of splash pads to four, joining existing locations at Bandmaster Park (Fairwinds), Pioneer Plains Park (Jackson Trails), and Upcountry Park. There are also splash pads nearby in Kanata South at Walter Baker Park, Kristina Kiss Park, Bluegrass Park and Crownridge Park.