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Daily updates on what's up in Coconut Grove and beyond including Brickell, Coral Gables and Midtown Miami

Monday, February 04, 2013

It's a never ending public works project

Blanche Park is getting a makeover. Again. This is one of those ongoing things where it's always a work in progress and the neighborhood consensus is that that people are not pleased. For one: they don't want AstroTurf which is what is being put down and two, they don't like the city throwing money away on a pocket park, which this basically is.

I was told by Commissioner Marc Sarnoff's office that the AstroTurf is necessary because this is a very highly used park, which I took as fact until I actually used my brain. On any given day, there are a handful of people, it only looks crowded since it is a small park and people are always jammed in one area, because they usually have to avoid tractors and building materials which are always part of the landscape there.

If you go to Kennedy or Peacock Parks, you'll see many more people, especially on weekends. There are more cars at Kennedy, than there are people on any given day.

I was told by the Commissioner's office that AstroTurf is a good thing and it's porous and it won't entail any upkeep. I was not told the cost. When I asked the Commissioner's office for the cost of this project, I was told to ask the Parks Department, I did ask the Parks Department and I did not receive an answer, I asked the NET office and I did not receive an answer. I went by the park to see if one of those big signs was up explaining the costs, it is not. So I can only assume it is an exorbitant amount of money since no one wants to talk.

I am thinking that money spent on the park could have gone to the police department where it is needed. But what do I know?

Update: This info came from the City's Capital Improvements Department: 

The scope of work includes the removal of the existing natural grass and replacing it with artificial grass.  In addition, the seashell walkway will be removed and replaced with a rubberized walkway.  The total cost for this work is $190,000.

I am upset now.

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15 Comments:

Anonymous Anonymous said...

The screwing people get is the screwing they deserve for reelecting Commissioner "Ethics."

February 04, 2013 8:02 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Ah, a free traffic circle and dog park. Being a politician is nice.

February 04, 2013 9:30 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

There are so many red biting ants in Kennedy Park how about some astro turf there? Disgusting that Blanche Park is getting all that money when other parks get nothing. But this is not a surprise given it's location and proximity to a local politician.

February 04, 2013 10:26 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

This is utterly a waste! talk about throwing good money away!! This is actually the 3rd time Sarnoff has approved monies to be allocated to this ridiculous park! 3 times!! Why not allocate the funds to something we really need! I would have preferred seeing this amount and the other amounts go toward the Play house or the West Grove. Sarnoff you should really consider asking the real community what we need and not just the dog park neighborhood! Senseless waste.

February 04, 2013 10:30 AM  
Blogger Sledge said...

I've been going to Kennedy and peacock Parks almost every day for many years, and I must admit that they are relatively well maintained, a nice running path, outdoors little gym.. The only thing that still pi$$es me off is they still haven't opened the infamous "windows" on the sacred mangroves, as promised years ago, after a wasted,comprehensive study which identified over 950 invasive, detrimental plants, bushes and trees to be removed. Nothing. The parks are still infested with Seaside Mahoes and such, and the Waterviews are still blocked.

February 04, 2013 10:33 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

If there were no mangroves where would people pee? On Saturday there was a special event in Peacock park with hundreds of people, all fields being used, people bringing 12 packs and drinking out of red cups, private vendors and free Muscle Milk for attendees. They obviously paid for the space and the city must have been aware of the presence of this organized event that lasted until sunset and yet no one thought even one urinal might be a good idea. All day men would go down to the mangroves to urinate and women would form packs to walk up to the stores to use the restrooms up there. Sunday started at 7 am with a rugby game and the park was packed until well after sunset. The mangroves served their purpose all day long.
The powers that be obviously feel that the fifty or so people that use Blanche are much more in need of AstroTurf than the thousands that use Peacock are in need of restrooms.

February 04, 2013 11:40 AM  
Blogger Sledge said...

That's true, you can easily take a leak behind the sacred Mangroves there, right into the water and no one will see ya.

I wonder how they could survive back in the 70's and 80's, when they had a Splendid Water View right there on Peacock park... (you could see the Water and boats all the way up from McFairlane and "Johnny Rockets..) without those toilet, sacred mangroves.

February 04, 2013 1:44 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

The park is very popular. People come from all over to bring their dogs. I agree that this park has received more money than it deserves for it's size but ... 1. right across the street from the commissioners home 2. it is the best dog park in the Grove/Gables/Downtown area.

Much of the use is in the morning and late afternoon when people take their dogs out.

February 04, 2013 3:27 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

@Sledge
Back then the Splendid Water View was blocked by separate concrete pavilions with picnic tables and bbq's overlooking a rock and seaweed beach and there were bathrooms in what is now the storage building in the center of the park and more bathrooms in the community center (now the CoC).

February 04, 2013 5:10 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

He should wear a ski mask at all times.

February 05, 2013 12:39 AM  
Blogger Brian Breslin said...

The natural grass had all been destroyed by the dogs who are the intended users of said park. The park gets packed with 30-40 dogs at a time in the evening post-work hours and on the weekends too.
the shell walkway was a mistake to put in originally as it is sharp and cuts the dogs paws.

they do need to refurb the dog park at kennedy though, its mostly just dirt now.

February 05, 2013 3:08 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Love the smell of dog urine on AstroTurf in the morning.

February 05, 2013 4:28 PM  
Blogger angel gonzales said...

I totally agree, I think money should be spent on something more worthwhile or for people's needs rather than having the park renovated again.

February 27, 2013 2:50 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

My dog says thanks! He loves the new park!

February 27, 2013 2:57 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Sarnoff takes his dogs to crap in the kiddie park next to the dog park in the wee hours of the morning and late at night. I video taped him doing this twice.

June 06, 2013 12:01 AM  

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