City seeks state funding to start Jackson Park revamp
EVERETT - The city is seeking state dollars to begin the renovation of Jackson Park.
The park’s approximately $2 million first phase was put on hold early last year because the city anticipated it couldn’t get funding for it.
The city has submitted a $1 million state capital budget request specifically for the park and a separate $500,000 request to the state’s recreation conservation office that also would need approval by the Legislature.
If Everett can get at least the recreation office dollars, work can start, parks department director Paul Kaftanski said. The city would have about $1 million to work from with that grant.
The city plans to redevelop the northside park over this decade and getting state funding is part of the plan.
Councilmen Shannon Affholter and Paul Roberts went to Olympia recently with Mayor Ray Stephanson to meet with 12 local legislators. Affholter said they seemed receptive to funding Jackson Park.
The Legislature opened its session in January and it lasts through April 28.
The city plans to improve Jackson Park in two phases totaling $15 million outlined in a 2011 master plan.
The 15-acre, often soggy park is long due for improvement. It largely borders the Delta Neighborhood in northeast Everett.
The first phase addresses the west side of the park and includes building a larger playground area, a community garden, adding more picnic tables and new pedestrian paths. The second phase includes improving the athletic facilities on the east side and buying additional acreage to the north.
The 14,000-square-foot community garden “still needs to be designed and there still needs to be a determination of how it will be managed,” Kaftanski said. The garden is partially funded through a $100,000 city block grant through the Delta Neighborhood, Kaftanski said.
For the second phase, a larger basketball court on the east side will be built not just for hoops but to accommodate pelota mixteca, a ball game similar to tennis except people hit the ball with their hands. Pelota mixteca players were using the parking lot because they didn’t have a place to play.
The new athletic fields will cost about $2.5 million. The park will keep its baseball diamond, soccer fields and other amenities.
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