Riverfront Park a treasure

Published 6:00 am Wednesday, August 30, 2017

After two years of waiting on tests, plans and finding the available funds, the Warren County Board of Supervisors and the Board of Mayor and Aldermen are ready to repair the slide area at Riverfront Park that was reported on Easter Sunday 2015, and resurface the park’s three play areas.

Putting together the plans to repair the slide area was not the problem. As Stantec engineer Brian Robbins told both boards Monday, the engineers have been waiting on them to reach a decision to make the repair.

It was something that should have been done at least a year ago. Riverfront Park is one of the area’s most used parks. It has a very good view of the Mississippi, picnic pavilions for family gatherings, play areas with playground equipment and a walking trail around the park’s perimeter. Go there any day of the week and you’ll find someone there — children playing on the swings, a couple on the walking trail, someone enjoying quiet lunch.

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On weekends, the park is packed with people getting out of the house and barbeque or have a picnic. It’s for those reasons, Riverfront Park needs to be kept up, and any problems that occur need to be resolved as soon as possible.

The play areas are one example of a problem allowed to linger too long. The surface is similar to synthetic turf with a foam cushioning underneath. It has been tearing and in need of replacement for several years. We have in the past reported on the condition of equipment and the surface at the play areas, including pictures showing worn-out areas in need of repair. The decision to include the play area resurfacing project with the slide repair is a good move, especially since one of the play areas is threatened by the slide.

While we are disappointed it took so long for the city and county leaders to get together and reach an agreement to fix the slide, we commend them for deciding to take action and make the necessary repairs at the park. Our hope is they won’t take so long to act on the next emergency at the park and that they will develop a plan to do more repairs and improvements, because the park is a treasure for the area.