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Splash pad safety, Heritage Park flag top Streator board talks

Park board looks at flag placement, greenway plan

Streator Parks and Open Spaces Board members are in talks about where to place a flag at Heritage Park in downtown Streator.
Streator Parks and Open Spaces Board members are in talks about where to place a flag at Heritage Park in downtown Streator.

Additional safety measures could be added to Streator’s new splash pad.

The Streator Parks and Open Spaces Board discussed some additions to the forthcoming splash pad at the northeast corner of City Park as a part of revisiting the city’s three-year park plan.

The board discussed whether a fence would be necessary as well as other measures to mark the play area for vehicles.

Board member Steve Broadus brought up the idea of using bollards, which are short and thick posts. He considered them to be “less intrusive to the experience” compared to fences and said they have become more popular in communities such as Bloomington-Normal.

“I think there’s greater injury to kids with a fence,” he added.

Council member Ed Brozak was in attendance and said the original intent was to add a seating wall on the north side.

City Manager Scot Wrighton suggested a giant bump out to give the play area and the safety measures some space from the road. Wrighton said a bump out of that size could take out two to three parking spaces and a fence would no longer need to be immediately adjacent.

“You can’t keep kids from running, but at least with a bump out, as a driver I’m going to have much more likelihood of seeing them than if they came out from behind parked cars,” Wrighton said.

The board also discussed adding a sign denoting the park as Paul’s Pad, named after Paul Dieken, whose family donated a majority of the funds for the park. An additional sign for park rules is expected to be added.

Park board members Broadus, Doug Snell and Chairman Gary Wheeler were in attendance, meaning the board did not have a quorum to vote but could discuss recommendations.

The board will review design renderings of the suggestions at its January meeting.

Heritage Park flag placement

The remaining board members revisited a topic of discussion last week that divided them: the placement of the flag at Heritage Park.

Wheeler opened discussion stating the north side of the park by Monroe Tap might be the best location for the flag, but a new location seemed to satisfy all.

Board members discussed placing the flag a few feet behind the clock tower. Initial concerns would be that it would be too many visuals in one location, but the board said there may be enough space to give it room behind the clock tower.

Design renderings of the new location will be presented to the board in January.

Broadus reiterated the importance of finding the right location and suggested reaching out to the American Legion to understand proper flag etiquette.

“It’s a big deal,” he said. “It’s a park and it’ll be there for decades. If we’re going to do this, we should do it right.”

Spring Lake included on trails plan
The board also reviewed its greenway plan and decided to add Spring Lake to the connected trails. A survey will be mailed out to residents next month for their input on the greenway plan.

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