North Minneapolis residents will have an opportunity to shape the future of their neighborhood parks at several events next month.
Park planners are seeking feedback from the public as they craft new designs for the 34 parks on the city's North Side. The Park and Recreation Board is drawing up new plans for all 160 parks in the city, and south Minneapolis and downtown are already complete.
Parks staff attended more than 100 events this year gathering information about how people use north Minneapolis parks and how they could be improved, said Adam Arvidson, the board's director of strategic planning.
"We're compiling all of this engagement," Arvidson said. "And then we will develop designs for each park based on what people were saying about those particular parks all summer long."
He said some themes that emerged were needs for improved basketball courts, more performance spaces for local artists and community gardening space.
In early January, the Park Board will kick off "Design Week" for the north Minneapolis plans. The public is encouraged to attend two events, where they can take their ideas directly to designers who are sketching out plans. Those designs will then be presented in more detail at events in February.
Not all parks will see quick changes after the plans are finalized. But the city's 2016 passage of a 20-year plan to fund roads and neighborhood parks will accelerate some of the improvements.
Arvidson said there is already money allocated in 2018 to perform work on Bassett Creek, Cleveland, Jordan, Lovell Square and Perkins Hill parks.
The Design Week meetings are Jan. 8 at Farview Recreation Center from 6 to 8 p.m. and Jan. 10 from 5:30 to 8 p.m. at the Minneapolis Park and Recreation headquarters.