Oregon City officially opens Hazel Grove Park
Oregon City officials cut the ribbon on the city's new 3.5-acre Hazel Grove Park on Friday, May 27, while kids enjoyed the new play features, ate snacks in the picnic shelter and walked the winding pathways that were created to help preserve wetland habitat and tree canopy.
Oregon City adopted the Hazel Grove name for the city's newest park because a hazelnut farm historically covered much of the neighborhood. There already are lots of nearby street names with variations of "hazel" or "filbert." During the ribbon-running ceremony, Commission President Denyse McGriff pointed out that the location of this park has deep roots in Oregon City's history, and hazelnuts are the state's official nut, since Oregon grows 99% of the total U.S. filbert crop.
"The revitalized space will now welcome visitors to relax and enjoy the open area, which improves quality of life and provides some respite from daily routine for those in the Westling Farm and Hazel Grove neighborhood," McGriff said.
On July 27 last year, Oregon City officials broke ground on the park project. Parks and Recreation Director Kendall Reid said the new amenity in Oregon City's park system is integral to increasing parks in underserved neighborhoods.
"We have shown there can be big impacts in constrained spaces with the redevelopment of Hazel Grove Park," Reid said. "I hope everyone in the community can come enjoy this space and appreciate the preservation of open space that was very important to the neighborhood."
Construction of the park includes amenities such as a nature play area, looped walkways, picnic benches and lit pathways.
In 2015, public meetings were held to gain input from neighbors about the desired use of the future park, and comments were incorporated and adopted into the master plan design concept.
Located at 11720 Hazelnut Ave., it was important to the neighbors to keep the most active areas of the future park centrally located, such as the shelter and children's nature play area, to cause minimal impact to the existing mature tree canopy.
It also was important to citizens to maximize the available open lawn area for active recreation opportunities. New native ornamental plantings were included in selected areas of the drainage-way to increase water quality and create visual interest.
The existing sidewalk spur from Hummingbird Loop was extended over a new pedestrian bridge into the center of the park, and down to a new accessible park entrance at the end of the Westwood Drive spur. Making parks usable by all abilities is a high priority for Oregon City leadership and community members.
Filbert Run Park construction was projected to cost $987,324, and the final bill came in at $1,058,000, funded through a mix of city general funds, system development fees and a $391,119 grant from the Oregon Parks and Recreation Department. Construction was performed by Paul Brothers Inc., and architectural planning came through a contract with Lango Hansen Landscape Architects.
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