Panel of citizens promotes Patterson Park projects Refurbished courts, new lighting sought

October 30, 1997|By Brenda J. Buote | Brenda J. Buote,SUN STAFF

A group of concerned citizens is urging city officials to approve plans to polish Patterson Park, the somewhat tarnished jewel of Southeast Baltimore.

Limited by a lack of resources, the Patterson Park Master Plan Advisory Committee is seeking cosmetic improvements -- such as refurbished tennis and basketball courts and new perimeter lighting -- to attract funding for more expensive projects.

Among those costly projects are a new drainage system for the boat lake and restoration of the Lombard Street gate.

Work on the smaller projects, which would cost more than $1 million, could begin as soon as spring 1999, according to a report the advisory committee submitted last week to the city Department of Public Works.

"There's about $10 million worth of repair work that needs to be completed in the park," said Myra Brosius, a city parks planner who worked with the advisory committee. "We had only $1 million to spend, so we had to refine our priorities."

In collaboration with the city Department of Recreation and Parks, Rhodeside & Harwell Inc., a Virginia landscape architecture business, drafted the improvement plan based on recommendations from the advisory committee over two years. Funding came from several sources, Brosius said.

The General Assembly allocated $350,000 this year for improvements at Patterson Park through Program Open Space.

Under the plan drafted by Rhodeside & Harwell, part of that money would be used to buy equipment for the playground by Linwood Avenue and to repave the basketball and tennis courts.

About 20 percent of a $1 million bond issue approved by city voters in 1994 covered the fee charged by Rhodeside & Harwell for its consulting work, paid for updated maps of the park created with aerial photography and funded studies of the boat lake and the Dominic "Mimi" DiPietro Family Skating Center.

The advisory committee was hoping to build a year-round ice rink, but that proved too costly, Brosius said.

The remainder of the bond issue, $825,000, would be used to renovate the perimeter of Patterson Park and to prepare design drawings for the boat lake's drainage system, a project that has not been funded.

An additional $25,000 state grant awarded in January will be used to install signs and repave the pathways around the park's pagoda.

Pub Date: 10/30/97

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