March 2011 - Parks & Recreation - 48

COV E R STO RY

when the public
partipates from
the beginning of
facilities projects,
everybody wins
By Andrea Lynn

PARTNERS

DESIGN

IN

When the city of Grand Prairie, Texas, had a vision to construct what
it was calling " the first Baby Boomer center in America, " it needed
to guarantee the recreation center would be a hit from the start. And
the best way to do that, they determined, was to get public feedback
for the project from conception through design up until the launch.
In conceptualizing a recreation center geared toward ages 50 and up, there was a series of community forums to start. The parks department worked
together with the mayor, city council, city managers, and park board to get feedback for The Summit, which would serve the needs of Baby Boomers
and older, senior citizens. Christina Kang, as a Park

and Recreation Board Member, helped serve as
a liaison for translating the public's requests into
a reality. " The Summit wouldn't have been possible without the residents of our city voting in a
sales tax to fund the project. So it was important
for us to make sure they had a voice in the design
and programming of The Summit, " Kang says.

46	 Parks & Recreation					 M A R C H 	 2 0 1 1 					 w w w . N R P A . O R G



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