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Aug 4, 2009
Three Ring Circus
In the last few weeks much has been said about the Destination Playground. The opposition centers around the scope of the project. There is no debate about our children needing playgrounds, especially those with special needs. The question is where should they be, and how large. The most dire consequence of the Destination Playground is the effect it will have on the Rose Garden side of the park. The Rose Garden side, the west side, has for the most part remained passive, until now. The Cedar Creek Park Plan means to change that. The other components of the plan are a wedding pavilion in the Rose Garden, and the paving and lighting of the rose garden side jogging path . Although brides being photographed is a time honored tradition in the garden, actual weddings is a different story. The amount of cleanup, distraction from the real role of appreciating the flowers, and parking will stress that icon beyond it's limit. Why light and pave the walkway? Because when the playground and it's required parking are built on the east side of Ott Street, Mayfair and other venues will be expanded over into the Rose Garden side. Ironically, a master plan done in 2005 recommended less usage of cedar Creek park, not more. How presumptuous of a new mayor, and a newer park director, to think they have a mandate to re-design our time honored park system.
The park was never meant to be a three ring circus. The Park Director, Greg Weitzel, told City Council he envisions a park with activities for every age and interest, and if you can't find something, just walk a few more feet. The east side of Cedar Park already contains a variety of athletic and recreational venues. Historic picture postcards of Allentown largely show our magnificent park system. Let not this beauty become just a memory on a postcard.