Update: Joslin Park & Manchaca/Ben White from CM Kitchen

Post date: Jul 30, 2018 10:13:55 PM

Dear Neighbors,

I would like to provide an update on all the actions that are being taken to address the challenges facing our community around Joslin Park and the Ben White/Manchaca Rd. overpass.

Below, please find an update regarding Joslin Park:

  • Park Activation:

Please know Park Rangers have visited Joslin Park on July 24th and July 26th to provide Leave No Trace programming and will return July 30th and August 9th between 5:00 pm and 8 pm. The purpose of this programming is to activate the space and remind park users of the park rules and good stewardship practices.

  • Playground Lighting Adjustments:

PARD is fabricating brackets to extend the ‘arm’ of the light fixture to provide a better distribution of light at the playground using the two solar lights that are currently installed and one additional solar light that will be installed in the near future. Once the playground lighting is adjusted, PARD will schedule an evening meeting with Joslin park representatives to review the lighting adjustments and identify priority locations for additional solar security lighting within the park. The additional solar lighting will be purchased and installed during this next fiscal year which starts in October 2018. PARD will also consider additional solar lights along the track near the playground and fitness equipment with FY19 lighting funds. Austin Energy has been contacted and a request to dim the sidewalk light has been submitted. The PARD team will work to determine a timeframe for reviewing/analyzing the light options.

  • Playground Equipment:

On July 20, PARD reached out to KOMPAN, the equipment manufacturer, to discuss the potential for swapping out play panels at the existing platform structure to increase transparency at the playground. On July 25, the manufacturer responded that they do not currently offer replacement panels or netting that could “plug and play” with this specific structure. The manufacturer’s design team is reviewing the structure to see which panels can be safely removed to allow better views into the structure, but still maintain a high level of play value. A meeting will be scheduled in the next two weeks with PARD’s playground safety team and Becky, the KOMPAN representative, to review the proposed changes to the structure for potential modifications.

The potential of altering the existing play structure will be determined once the lighting changes have been completed and the community stakeholders have had the opportunity to observe any benefits gained by the adjustments. In the meantime, KOMPAN will continue to research alternatives to the enclosed platform area.

Further updates will continue until the issues are adequately resolved.

Updated Schedule of Clean-ups at Manchaca and Ben White in Addition to the TXDoT Clean-ups:

August-14th

Sept-18th

Oct-16th

Nov-20th

Dec-18th

Jan-15th

As always my office will monitor the situation at the overpass and work with all parties to continue making improvements.

I want to thank everyone, neighbors, city staff and staff from all the other agencies who are committed to finding effective solutions for these challenges.

Please stay in touch with my office with any questions or comments and call 911 when you see a situation that APD or EMS needs to address.

Thank you for all you do for our community!

Best Regards,

Ann Kitchen

City Council, District 5