San Juan Bautista held a breaking-ground ceremony on Feb. 4 for the new park located at Franklin Circle. Construction begins Feb. 7. You could sense the eagerness of the children from the neighborhood to have access to a new park.
The ceremony included speeches from San Juan Bautista Mayor Leslie Jordan, Councilmembers Scott Freels and Cesar Flores, Planning Commissioner David Medeiros, Assemblyman Robert Rivas and neighbors. About 15 people attended the event.
Scott Freels reminisced about growing up in the neighborhood and playing kick the can with his friends in the plot of dirt.
To Planning Commissioner David Medeiros, the plot of dirt serves as a symbol.
“The dirt is firm, just like the neighborhood,” Planning Commissioner David Medeiros said.
According to the speeches, it has been the first time a new park has been built in San Juan Bautista in about 100 years and has been in the plans for 13 years.
The proposed park at Franklin Circle, which is yet to be named, is located on a raised median at the end of the street on about 83,400 square foot area. The design includes a bocce ball court, a hopscotch court, a barbecue grill, picnic tables and landscaping.
The city obtained a $100,000 Prop 68 grant to help fund the $190,000 project. Additionally, it will use $30,201 from the public facility impact fee fund, $62,000 from the park in lieu fee fund, and $16,500 from the park development fees fund.
Rivas said that smaller regions are traditionally under-resourced even though the money those communities receive usually have a bigger impact.
“It is important to steer money to communities that need it the most,” Rivas said.
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