BPRW Project Updates — Winter 2024

BPRW Project Updates — Winter 2024: Read on to find out what the BPRW Planning Team has been up to!


Welcome snow’s brightness! Well, at least there was some snow when we started compiling this season’s newsletter! Here’s to hoping you had a chance to play in it before it disappeared! And here’s to more snow in March! 

Below are updates on several ongoing projects – please reach out with questions or for more information. To stay up-to-date on parks projects, please sign up for our newsletter! 


Champlain Street Park Renovations 

We have officially hired a contractor to help us fully renovate Champlain St Park! Thanks to numerous grants and donations, we’ll have adequate budget to cover the cost of completing the park’s full renovation. The project is planned to include a new playground with poured-in-place surfacing, construction of an accessible concrete seating area and walkway, and installation of a new electrical service and lighting.  We’re currently finalizing the details of the playground design for the subcontractor to begin its fabrication. We expect the contractor to begin mobilizing in Spring and to wrap up construction sometime in June. Looking forward to seeing you at a grand opening event in the summer! 


Dewey Park Refresh and Next Steps 

BPRW continues to support Burlington’s Racial Equity, Inclusion and Belonging Office and Burlington City Arts with the installation of Embrace & Belonging, a beautiful new monument designed for Dewey Park in the Old North End. This new piece of public art in the heart of Burlington’s most diverse neighborhood will instantly elevate this important neighborhood gathering place. Updates on the Embrace and Belonging Monument Project can be found on the project’s website 

BPRW will continue to explore incorporating the segment of the Spring St. right-of-way into the official park boundary before undertaking a comprehensive planning effort for the park. The latter will not be initiated be for a few years after the monument’s installation to let use of the space shift and adjust to having this key symbol to equity in the park. 


Leddy Park Comprehensive Plan 

The final public meeting for the Leddy Park Comprehensive Plan was held in June 2023. Several community members attended and over 700 responses were collected from an online survey launched in conjunction with the final meeting. The final plan for the park is complete and the final report is nearing completion.  

In the interim, BPRW secured grant funding from the State’s Clean Water Fund Project Development Grant through the Addison County Regional Planning Commission to hire a contractor to study the North Leddy Gully. The gully’s outfall is into Lake Champlain, out on Leddy Beach and is highly eroded and contributing phosphorus to the Lake. The study includes a review of the larger upland subwatershed which contributes stormwater and runoff into this outlet, including the neighborhood to the north of Leddy and a small portion of Leddy Park. The study will wrap up in June with suggestions of Stormwater Treatment Projects that could help reduce the flow and sediment reaching the gully. This project was identified as part of the Comprehensive Plan site assessment. 

Additional information about the project and the final plan can be found on the project page. 


Leddy Bike Park 

With the Leddy Park Comprehensive Plan mostly wrapped up, we’ve been drafting up a Request for Proposals (RFP) for the final design and construction of Phase I of a mountain bike park at Leddy. The RFP is now posted, and we’ll be hiring a contractor to execute the design and for construction to begin in the coming season. Per the comprehensive plan, the Bike Park will be located in the wooded area south of the Park’s main access road. We expect the project to include design of the full Bike Park and construction of approximately three-quarters of a mile of accessible mountain bike flow trails and jump lines in Phase I.  

The project is being funded in part by our Penny for Parks Funds (PFP), allocated after a community-request in 2019, a project match being provided by the Burlington Bike Park Coalition who submitted the request, and a substantial grant from the State of VT VOREC (Vermont Outdoor Recreation Economic Collaborative) program. Assuming the bid-process goes smoothly, we are hopeful that construction can begin in the coming summer with completion by the fall or early winter of 2024, depending on any permitting requirements. 


Leddy Park Pause Place 

Construction on the Leddy Park Pause Place ran through most of last summer, reaching substantial completion by the fall. The Pause Place includes renovated pathways between the Gordon H. Paquette Ice Arena and the parking lot, with a large concrete oval at the Greenway providing more space for people to navigate and improve visibility in this busy intersection. Have you checked out the newest fitness station, featuring multi-level bars, ellipticals, and an accessible chest-press station? Shortly after its completion, we observed many visitors putting the equipment through its paces. 

In addition to the Pause Place, the second bioretention area along the parking lot was completed; a requirement of stormwater permitting for the Greenway. Hundreds of yards of washed stone and bioretention soil were layered in the southern swale adjacent to the parking lot, topped off with native trees, shrubs, and perennials. This new bioswale will filter pollutants and excess nutrients from stormwater-runoff from the parking lot, while adding beauty and biodiversity to our park. The project will wrap-up with final seeding and turf establishment on any bare soil still remaining this spring. 


Oakledge Universally Accessible Playground 

The Grand Opening of Burlington’s first universally accessible playground in early November was an incredible success! From a site-specific flash-mob dance, enthusiastic words of congratulations and thanks from Mayor Miro Weinberger, to the non-stop stream of children and adults joyously descending the wide-family slide. Thank you for coming out to celebrate this landmark achievement! 

Homer Horowitz Photography

Homer Horowitz Photography

With great feedback from the community, BPRW will be improving access to the extra wide family slide in the spring. Burlington, we heard you, and we will make it even better! We will continue to gather feedback from the community this coming summer as the playground is tested for a full season!  

Thanks to our Grounds, Trees & Greenways and Planning teams for late season plantings that helped spruce up the playground before the opening. We look forward to adding more plant material as the existing planted areas take hold. We want to be sure to put plants where they will be appreciated and not where they will get trampled.  

And lastly, the decade it took to build the playground at Oakledge has yielded a unique and compelling partnership with The Parks Foundation of Burlington. During the last year, the Planning Division and Director Cindi Wight have been collaborating on a new exciting playground campaign. Playgrounds for All / Forever is a multi-year fundraising campaign that will supplement earmarked capital funds through Penny for Parks for playgrounds to ensure accessibility is at the forefront of every new BPRW playground. The first of five playgrounds in five years will be at Pomeroy Park during the coming season and will culminate with another regional-scale playground, à la Oakledge, at Leddy Park aimed for 2028, pending funding and securing large grants. Stay tuned! 

There are still a few opportunities for purchasing commemorative benches within the playground! For more information check out our bench page and secure a seat at the heart of one of Burlington’s favorite new hangouts. 


Roosevelt Park Comprehensive Plan 

Photo of Roosevelt Park sign in the sunshine

Over the summer, BPRW worked steadily on outreach within the neighborhood, with key stakeholders, including the Boys and Girls’ Club, and established a Community Advisory Committee (CAC) for the comprehensive plan process.  Outreach materials were distributed in ten languages and our summer intern called and emailed several key community leaders.  

BPRW, along with consultants from VIEWSHED, held a first public meeting about Roosevelt Park Comprehensive Plan in late fall 2023. After the public meeting and two CAC meetings, BPRW paused the design process to be able to continue the extensive outreach to community members who, historically, have been largely underrepresented in planning projects. This work continues and a second public meeting will be scheduled in coming weeks for early spring to discuss options for the future of the park. BPRW continues to discuss the project with community members and to engage partners in joining the process. 

Please sign up to our newsletter or connect directly with us to be the first to know when they will be held! 


Roosevelt Tennis Courts 

Renovation of the Roosevelt Park Tennis Courts was nearly completed this past summer. Though delayed due to an equipment malfunction and heavy flooding throughout the state this past summer, the contractor moved quickly to fully renovate the court pavement from the subbase up and installed all new fencing, mesh, and gates. Unfortunately, the weather quickly cooled in October to low temps that are not conducive for the installation of the painted surfacing, delaying completion of the project to spring 2024. We expect them to quickly wrap up the project as soon as overnight temperatures get back into the 50s, typically in May.   


Schifilliti Park Pathway 

The pathway construction was put out to bid this fall and a construction contractor has been hired. We expect construction to begin this summer, sometime after the end of the school year and Little League baseball season and to wrap up before school starts back up in the fall. The project will include construction of a new sidewalk beginning at the front of the Miller Center and connecting to a new 8-foot-wide asphalt pathway that will continue through the park to James Ave. We’re currently finalizing paperwork and getting all the details in order so that we can hit the ground running in the coming season. 


Greenway Path to North Avenue/ Voices of St. Joseph’s Orphanage Memorial Project 

BPRW is thrilled to announce the construction of the long-awaited accessible path through Kieslich Park, connecting the Old North End at North Avenue to the Burlington Greenway is anticipated towards the end of 2024.  Once the path is constructed, BPRW will work with the Voices of St. Joseph Group on the installation of a a Memorial and healing gardenalong the path. The proposed design includes engraved prose from the Voices of St. Joseph’s Orphanage Writing Group on symbolic glacial erratic boulders, swaths of colorful, pollinator friendly wildflowers, and a central sculptural arbor.  

Fundraising for the Memorial is not yet complete. The Voices of St. Joseph’s development group has raised over $80,000 for the construction of this space, including $25,000 each from the City of Burlington and the State of Vermont, but double the amount is needed to complete the project. Information about donating and the project are included on the Orphanage Restorative Justice website. 

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