Name a new park!

City asks residents for Southwest side space
Artists rendering of proposed to space on the City of Grand Rapids' southwest side. Art courtesy of Grand Rapids Parks and Recreation.

The City of Grand Rapids Parks and Recreation Department is asking the community to help name a new park that’s coming to southwest Grand Rapids. Officials hope to start construction this fall on the future park at 680 Cesar E. Chavez Ave. SW.

Extensive community input helped design the park space. The proposed features include play areas and café-style seating. They also include flexible seating areas, a hammock grove, a rentable shelter space and an kiosk. The kiosk features the cupola from the former St. Joseph the Worker Parish.

The community can suggest names for the new park space through July 14. The Parks and Recreation Department will be at the Roosevelt Park Neighborhood Farmer’s Market, 1100 Cesar E. Chavez Ave. SW, on June 14 and July 12 from 3:30 to 6:30 p.m. Staff will take name ideas from community members in person. Those with suggestions can also submit them online through the project website HERE.

To qualify for consideration, names must adhere to guidelines outlined in the City’s park naming policy, which, in part, states that names should have historical, cultural, and social significance for generations to come.

After the initial submission period, the Parks Advisory Board will approve the top choices selected by a community stakeholder group for a public vote. The City Commission will consider approval of the name with the most votes in October.

“This is a first-of-its-kind, community-led park naming process for Grand Rapids,” said David Marquardt, the City’s parks and recreation director. “Our hope is that this campaign will make neighbors again feel directly included in creating a new community asset that reflects the surrounding neighborhood identity.”

Construction companies can begin bidding on the estimated $2 million project this summer. Funding for this project comes through the permanent parks, pools and playgrounds millage, passed by Grand Rapids voters in 2019.

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