2017-09-21 / Editorial

Playground: Swings, slides and success

By the looks of things, Jamestown will have a spankin’ new playground next spring.

The proposal OK’d by the town council Monday night will provide state-of-the-art play equipment for our kids for at least a generation. This was a much-needed project since the original playground — after providing 27 years of enjoyment — had to be replaced for safety reasons. We also know the playground receives plenty of use year-round so this is the antithesis of government waste.

The new schematic not only is safer, but also less dense, thus providing a better flow for children while still allowing for additional equipment in the future.

We also were happy to see the many nautical-themed pieces — lighthouse and pirate ship — that are homages to the island’s past.

The committee, which spent about six months and 15 meetings going through all the minute details, should be commended for a job well done, not only from an aesthetics perspective but also by staying within its budget. The first phase will cost $257,000, in line with the initial $250,000 to $300,000 projections. In today’s world of project cost overruns and wish lists, it was smart of them to provide the best playground the allowable money could provide, without putting the taxpayer on the hook for any more.

There is a second phase of the project, which if money can be raised through fundraisers and donations, eventually may come to fruition. That $124,000 piece would add on to some of the Phase 1 elements, as well as introduce large musical play elements. They would be great additions and, hopefully, our generous community will donate toward that cause.

Until then, we can look forward to spring, when not only will the flowers bloom but so will the hopes of many children upon seeing their new playground for the first time.

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