On May 31st I joined Mayor Murray and numerous members of the city staff and community members for a community Find It Fix It walk around Aurora-Licton Spring Urban Village. During that walk I met a community member named Nathan. He expressed concern about illegal activity in neighborhood parks. I encouraged him to put his concerns in writing following the walk so that my staff and the Department of Parks and Recreation could follow up on the issues he was concerned about.
I am proud to say that this community dialogue has resulted in several short-term and long-term deliverables to increase the safety, accessibility and enjoyment of Licton Springs and Mineral Springs parks.
Thank you to the active community members who care about their parks and thank you to the Department of Parks and Recreation for your dedication. This is exactly the kind of result we were hoping to see come out of the Find It Fix It community walks, this is just the first a many small steps forward.
Excerpt from an email from the Department of Parks and Recreation to the community
We [Parks and Recreation] are immediately:
- Increasing staff visits to these parks from three per day to four visits per day. This will enable Parks and Recreation staff to collect garbage, litter and needles more frequently.
- Clearing some of the brush and trimming some shrubs and trees to open site lines and reduce hiding areas. The landscaping work will follow Crime Prevention Through Environmental Design (CPTED) guidelines.
- Removing and repairing a broken bench at Licton Springs.
- Opening the restrooms later in the day when the play area is active and closing it earlier in the evening, when residential activity falls off. (It is now opened at 6:30 and closed at 10:00 pm)
- Increasing lighting by adding flood lights on the outside of the comfort station.
We are committed to completing this work by July, with the exception of the lighting which may take a bit longer.
For the longer term, we will be:
- Replacing the playground equipment, expected to be completed by year-end.
- Working with our volunteer office to get more neighbors involved in work parties, and our park activation staff to promote activating the parks.
- Attending the neighborhood council meeting at North Seattle Community College to discuss the work that has been done, and the work yet to be completed in both parks, and how the community and Parks and Recreation can continue working together.