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Citing safety concerns, big changes coming to Loomis Park starting in 2023

Loomis Park
Loomis Park
Posted at 4:38 PM, Jun 24, 2022
and last updated 2022-06-24 16:38:54-04

JACKSON, Mich. — The wooden playground at Loomis Park has been there for at least 20 years, and the park itself has been there for even longer. But, a recent push by city officials will have residents seeing something completely new at the park.

Jackson City Council recently approved reallocating nearly a half a million dollars in Community Development Block Grant money to help improve amenities at Loomis Park.

“Loomis Park is in great need of a rejuvenation,” the city's Public Information Officer Aaron Dimick said.

With the addition of $470,000 just approved by the council, the city now has more than a million dollars to make the improvements to the park.

Once the renovations are finished, what you’ll see is a brand new, modern playground, a new pavilion and more walking paths as well as a land balance, which will remove a significant amount of soil between the Jackson Boos Recreation Center and east Ganson Street. This will help the land go from a sudden drop to a gentle slope, according to documents.

This, in turn, will help create a safer environment at the park, according to the city.

“We’ve heard reports and seen evidence of people hiding back there using drugs and loitering,” Dimick said. “We feel like there has been a certain amount of crime here just because of the environment is as such that it allows people to do things in a more covert fashion, so we want to balance the land so you have a nice transparent area where, if you’re an officer and you’re going through the parking lot, or you’re someone who is walking by or driving by, you can see what’s going on here.”

Work on other projects has already started.

The park's basketball court was rehabilitation started in 2020. That same year, the Boos Center received a new roof and a new walking path to connect it to the parking areas. Next week, they’re replacing its HVAC system.

An important note for residents and community groups who use the Boos Center for recreation programs or to exercise, while the HVAC system is being replaced, those programs will be moved to Northeast Elementary School for the time being.

The bulk of the renovations are still in the planning stages, but officials are planning for the summer of 2023 to begin the rest of the project.

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