An old commuter lot in the Occoquan District is the future site of a 2.5-acre park.
The lot, which sits at the corner of Minnieville Road and Harbor Drive in Lake Ridge, isn’t used for most of the year.
“It’s just growing weeds. It had some collection boxes in it for a while,” Supervisor Ruth Anderson said at the Harbor Drive Park Planning Town Hall Meeting on Thursday. “The only thing I’ve seen it used for in my two-and-a-half years — with my office close by — is for the Santa Parade lineup.”
Anderson’s office and partnering organizations, including Keep Prince William Beautiful (KPWB), are interested in converting the lot into what is currently being called “Harbor View-Minnieville Park.”
Town hall meeting attendees were able to discuss what features they would like to see in the park, such as a greenhouse or a playground that is compliant with Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) standards.
Establishing the park is one way officials hope to increase green space in the area.
When Anderson joined the Board of County Supervisors (BOCS) in 2016, she learned that the Occoquan District had the least amount of public park space among all seven districts.
“I didn’t like those numbers and we set out to do something about it,” she said.
The lack of space dedicated to parks can be see countywide.
“In our Comprehensive Plan, we have a goal to have a certain number of acres of park space for a certain number of population, and we are way below that,” Anderson said.
Funding for the park could come from grants and remaining funds from fiscal 2018.
Anderson has set aside about $10,000 that carried over from last fiscal year.
About $700,000 has been set aside from fiscal 2018 contingency funds, as well.
“That — we hope — is going to be used for matching funds for additional grants that we would get for this garden,” Anderson said.
Officials have also received a $25,000 grant to plan the space.
“Having this planning grant brings a lot of consultants to the table, people that can help us so that this park really turns out to be professional,” Anderson said.
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