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Board to Vote on Nauck, Va. Highlands Parks

by ARLnow.com September 13, 2012 at 11:00 am 4,441 14 Comments

The Arlington County Board on Saturday is expected to vote on contracts for two park projects in south Arlington.

The Board will consider a $573,000 contract to build a new “sprayground” at Virginia Highlands Park, at 1600 S. Hayes Street near Pentagon City. The park was originally scheduled to open this past Memorial Day, but the project has been beset by delays. According to the staff report, the project was finally put out for bid in May, only to have the bids from contractors all came in higher than expected.

The sprayground was redesigned in order to put it within budget. A new water re-circulation system, which should save 113,000 gallons of water per week, was put into place. The sprayground was also reduced in scale, and certain features like a steel fence and a designed rock structure were eliminated.

The Board will vote on whether to award a $521,000 contract contract with a $52,000 contingency to Southern Playground Corporation.

The other contract under consideration is for the tiny 0.6 acre Nauck Park, located at 2551 19th Street S.

Planning for playground upgrades to the park began all the way back in 2004. Construction was finally set to get underway in 2008 — following a plan to enhance amenities at the park while removing an existing restroom — when the Nauck Civic Association request that all work on the project stop, so that the park could be redesigned in a way that would keep the restroom. In order to keep the project within budget, the county scaled down other planned amenities within the park.

On Saturday, the Board is scheduled to consider a $316,000 contract — $287,000 plus a $29,000 contingency — with Avon Corporation. The contract covers renovations to the playground and the bathroom, as well as accessible entrances, an accessible picnic area, benches and bicycle racks.

  • da truth

    i like the area they reserved for “selling dope”

    • Stringer Bell

      Took some effort to get that in there.

    • Rusty Shackleford

      Yes, it’s called the restroom.

      As someone who lives near Nauck Park, I’m looking forward to seeing spent condoms and little baggies all over the ground again. Better than needles, I guess.

  • Regis

    That sprayground plan reminds me off all the millions of other sprayground plans that tried so hard to be that one lucky one to break through and be born as a wonderful public park.

  • Mick Way

    “water recirculation system”

    This is a playground where toddlers will be playing in water, correct?

    Will the system add a little chlorine maybe? Do you get my drift here?

    • no

      we prefer it to become increasingly yellow

  • Rusty Shackleford

    Nauck Park won’t be “keeping” a restroom–the one that’s there has been locked up for many years. The project to be voted on by the board is going to renovate that restroom (at a cost of tens of thousands of dollars) to bring it up to code so it can be reopened.

    At least they might actually do some work this time, at least until the civic association changes its mind again and demands another halt to construction.

  • Arlington Taxpayer

    Do we really need another spray park that will only be open a few days each year at such an outrageous cost?

    • ACDC Hack

      YES…..we must spend or else we will be purged !!!

    • WeiQiang

      VA Highlands Park has gotten really shabby and the sprayground isn’t needed as much as renovation and maintenance of the entire park. The park is used a lot, which is a great thing, but it is not maintained. The tennis court lighting system project was never completed, the work site has been dormant for over two years, and the work area is eroding down on to the court area.

    • Mick Way

      It’s quite likely that this project, like the Clarendon dog park, was part of a bond issue. if so then yes the funds have to be spent on this project and can’t be moved to a non-parks project.

      Just guessing here but most projects like this arise from bond issues voted upon by the populace. Don’t like them? Get a majority of ARL voters to vote them down. Good luck though because history has shown we loves us some parks.

  • Neighborhood Resident

    Can anyone clarify whether there is an “offical” entry on 18th St for the Nauck park? The drawing indicates that there is and there is a gate there currently, but anytime I’ve tried to use it, I get an angry stare from the person that lives at the house on 18th ST. Is there a public right away from the gate to the street or not? I have never seen anyone in this park, by the way. Seems like a lot of $ to fix something up that may not get used anyhow.

    • Rusty Shackleford

      “Officially” there is a public right of way to the park from 18th Street. On some maps you’ll see “Cleveland Street” running into the park between the houses there, although it was never paved. That is county property, although the guy living next to the park has put a lot of stuff there.

      One of the things the county was going to try to do with this project was to create better signage and a new gate to make clear that the 18th street entrance is open to the public. Unclear whether they will do so now, with the bathroom seemingly eating up the project’s entire budget.

      At any rate, last I heard they plan to move the construction equipment in from the 18th street side, so that guy better move those cars.

  • bobbytiger

    How about a garden hose? It’ll cost the county, (actually the tax payers), about 15 bucks.


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