City provides park improvement updates

Courtesy city of Grand Rapids

The Grand Rapids Parks and Recreation Department reported its annual park update last week.

The update on the 36 recently completed, current and upcoming park improvements marked the final phase of the seven-year parks millage passed by Grand Rapids voters in 2013 and the start of its new evergreen parks millage passed in 2019.

Parks and Recreation Director David Marquardt said the 2021, $4.4 million millage investment was supplemented by $7.1 million of leveraged funding from outside grants and organizations.

“The improvements made to our park system, guided by community input and the investment policies initiated by this body and the parks advisory committee, have created meaningful and inspirational experiences for our residents,” Marquardt said. “With the passage of the evergreen millage, we’re excited to continue our work of being responsible stewards of these tax dollars.”

Two parks to be funded from the 2013 parks millage are pending amid Grand River restoration projects and additional outside funding. Pending funding applies to Ah-Nab-Awen Park, at 220 Front Ave. NW, and Calder Plaza, at 300 Monroe Ave. NW.

The 2013 parks millage will have provided upgrades to each of the city’s 75 parks and funded a total of 84 park improvement projects upon completion of all plans. Since 2014, the total millage investment is $27,260,019 with $24,048,277 additional leveraged funding.

The evergreen parks millage passed in 2019 will take effect in 2022. According to Marquardt, new millage funding priorities for the coming year include increased park maintenance levels of service, increased funding for community recreation programs, enhancement of pools and aquatics programs with continued park repairs, and new amenities with capital funding.

More information on all parks millage projects is online.

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