Marcy-Holmes parks need renovations

Marcy officials are seeking funding and board assistance for parks in disrepair.

A group plays a game of pick-up basketball at Holmes Park located in the Marcy-Holmes neighborhood of Minneapolis. The Minneapolis Park and Recreation Board has money designated for renovations that are set to start in 2018.

Zach Bielinski

A group plays a game of pick-up basketball at Holmes Park located in the Marcy-Holmes neighborhood of Minneapolis. The Minneapolis Park and Recreation Board has money designated for renovations that are set to start in 2018.

Raju Chaduvula

As the University of Minnesota’s Marcy-Holmes neighborhood grows, its parks have seen more wear and tear.

The Marcy-Holmes Neighborhood Association and the Minneapolis Park and Recreation Board will soon begin renovations and updates to the area’s parks.

“Several parks are in dire need [of renovation],” said Jan Morse, MHNA’s president.

The parks have been subject to growing usage as new families move to the neighborhood, Morse said. The parks also draw nonresident use.

Father Hennepin Bluffs Park is the most popular park in the area, Morse said, and is one that requires attention.

Much of the park’s turf shows signs of wear and tear, she said. Amenities in the area, like water fountains, have fallen into disrepair.

Marcy Park on 11th Avenue Southeast and Holmes Park on Third Avenue Southeast have been identified as parks in need of remodeling, landscaping and equipment upgrades, Morse said.

“All [the] parks can be redesigned … can have defined play areas with amenities,” she said.

Morse said the association and the neighborhood currently have programs in place to do some upkeep, but it is up to the city’s park board to execute larger upgrades.

Adam Arvidson, the board’s strategic planning director, said the improvements for the parks are addressed in the board’s six-year plan.

The board’s Capital Improvement Plan addresses a selection of parks in the area that require necessary infrastructure updates. Money is allocated over the course of a six-year time frame to complete repairs, expansions and enhancements, Arvidson said.

Two of Marcy-Holmes’ parks — Marcy Park and Holmes Park — are listed in the board’s 2016-22 Capital Improvement Plan. 

Renovations at Marcy Park are due in 2020 with more than $300,000 set aside for playground and site improvements.

Meanwhile, Holmes Park will undergo more than $290,000 worth of renovations in 2018 and 2019.

Arvidson said the board is drafting a new master plan for parks, which will feature more ambitious renovations. 

The board will take input from neighborhood associations like MHNA before it drafts the master plan, he said.

Meanwhile, Elwell Park on Sixth Street Southeast is in more immediate need than others, said MHNA’s Secretary John Capecci.

The park, which was designed in part by Marcy Open School, was built in 2000 as a community-artist partnership. It features a house theme with a porch swing, a bed-shaped bridge and a mosaic sofa.

Capecci said the MHNA is responsible for updating the park’s artwork, but funding is required to move forward with renovations.

The park needs about $25,000 for a full upgrade, he said. Capecci said he hopes the monthlong project will be completed this summer.