Friday, November 9, 2012

Pirate-Themed Playground Donated To Palm Bay

PALM BAY, Florida - Residents in the northeast portion of Palm BaY may soon benefit from a new playground thanks to a donation from Advanced Recreational Concepts of Melbourne and BCI Burke.  The two companies working in partnership with the city plan to construct the playground at no cost to local taxpayers.  


On Tuesday, November 13th, the Palm Bay City Council will consider a plan to accept the donation to build a pirate themed playground and safety surfacing at a designated park site located at 1381 Riviera Boulevard. 


"This is the Cadillac of playgrounds," said Director of Parks and Recreation Heidi Lapin.  "We feel this unique donation will open the doors for endless positive experiences for our community both now and into the future."  


In mid-October, the president of Advanced Recreational Concepts, Lazaro Gonzalez, approached Parks Director Lapin about a collaborative project in which the Melbourne company in partnership with BCI Burke would construct the pirate ship playground complete with slides, climbing features, interactive play panels and more.  


The donation, valued at approximately $65,000 is an effort by the companies to give back to the community and partner with the city to offer positive, healthy activities for residents.  The project should be completed by early January 2013 pending council approval.


If approved, the city would be required to invest approximately $12,000 of park impact fees (not tax dollars) for necessary site work to properly install the playground and safety surfacing. "I was elated by this opportunity to build a new playground in an area where children need a place to play in their own neighborhood," Lapin added.  "And the best part about this, aside from the fact it’s all donated, is the community will have total ownership because they are going to help build it!" 


Once approved the city and its partners will host a community build to construct the playground under the supervision of Advanced Recreational Concepts.  


The location of the new playground was determined by need, sustainability, and overall benefit to the neighborhood.  Future plans on the 14.5 acre designated park site include parking for up to a dozen vehicles, safety fencing, walkways, benches, picnic tables and replacing the existing gazebo along with removal of invasive vegetation. Palm Bay spokesperson ,Yvonne Martinez, added that these improvements will enhance the environmental aspects of the site and improve the overall quality of life in the community.