When the new Secrest Recreation Center opened in October 2018 not only did it replace the previous facility on 66th Avenue, but it phased out the neighboring playground due to its construction. A …
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When the new Secrest Recreation Center opened in October 2018 not only did it replace the previous facility on 66th Avenue, but it phased out the neighboring playground due to its construction.
A new, all-inclusive playground, however, is on the way.
Apex Park and Recreation District held a groundbreaking ceremony on Saturday morning at Secrest Park, where not only will there be a playground, but an accessible walking path from 66th Avenue to Pierce Street, a picnic shelter, plaza and other amenities.
“As you know, APEX doesn’t typically take on park projects. We usually do active recreation. This project is a little different as we own all of this land. So, we realize we shouldn’t just let it be vacant. We should try to invest in it as a neighborhood amenity,” said Lauri Dannemiller, executive director for the Apex Park and Recreation District.
The estimated cost for Phase One is $650,000, according to Mark Baird, the director of District Services and Capital Improvement for Apex. Game Time, a playground design company, provided a matching grant of $125,000 to cover the estimated $240,000 cost for the playground. The remaining funding, Baird said, came from capital funding as well as from the city, which will pay for the lighting and a portion of the concrete path for the park.
“We are so excited to see the project come to life,” said Vicki Pyne, director for the Apex Park and Recreation District. “Back in 2018, the Apex special projects team was tasked with launching the park with two goals in mind — community outreach to co-design a replacement park for the Secrest neighborhood and to try and find funding to build the park.”
While Pyne noted that Apex wasn’t able to land a Great Outdoors Colorado grant to help with funding, it did receive a grant from Game Time. With that limited funding, Apex is moving forward with Phase One of what it hopes will be a multiple-phase project that will include not only the all-ability playground but potentially a skate park and other amenities.
Baird said that Phase One should be completed by mid to late June. Future phases will follow if the Apex Board of Directors approves funding, Baird noted.
JL Melton Construction secured the winning bid to develop the park.
“When we saw this project come out for bid, we thought it was an excellent fit for our company,” JL Melton Construction co-owner Jessica Melton said. “We have a lot of experience doing open space trails, picnic shelters and park restrooms. Partnering with the local community is really important for us. We have experience working with Game Time. We’re really excited to have a project so close to home that is our community.”
DHM Design worked with Apex to layout Secrest Park.
“I think we created a design that will be a great asset for the community,” said landscape architect Kyle Davis with DHM design. “We’re looking forward to that coming to fruition.”
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