By Tammy Gray
Just one vital piece of the new splash pad in Holbrook remains to be installed before the park is officially opened to the public.
“We’re waiting on the chlorination system to arrive,” City Manager Ray Alley explained on Monday. “I’m hoping it will get here today or tomorrow, and we’re shooting for opening on Thursday or Friday, but we just don’t know yet.”
City employees and their families tested the functionality of the splash pad late last week to make sure that each water feature operated as expected. The test was successful, but Alley noted that the park cannot be opened until the complete chlorination system is in place. As long as it arrives during the first part of the week, Alley feels confident that it can be installed and the park opened before the weekend.
Although the splash pad portion of the park is nearly finished and will be opened to the public, other components of the park remain under construction. Batting cages, goofy golf, horseshoe pits, a bocce ball area, barbecue grills and benches are all slated to be completed by city crews as time permits over the summer months.
The Holbrook City Council recently approved spending an additional $5,000 to purchase barbecue grills, benches and picnic tables for the park. The overall cost of the park has remained relatively low, however, in comparison to estimates given by contractors. According to Alley, one contractor estimated a cost of around $250,000 just to construct the splash pad. The city is completing the project for around $160,000. City staff has completed most of the work, fitting it in between other responsibilities, and donations of materials and water features were sought to help reduce the overall cost.
The park is located directly behind city hall on the site of the former city swimming pool. Alley noted that in addition to beautifying an empty lot and fulfilling the city’s goal of infilling vacant lots, it also provides a recreational opportunity within walking distance for children on the west side of Navajo Blvd.
Although initially planned only as a splash pad, the vision for the park expanded to include other elements so that it will be usable year-round. During the winter months, the splash pad will be locked up, but the remainder of the park will be accessible.
The splash pad includes 14 full-size features and six mini-features that shoot, spray and dump water. The water is continuously recycled through a filtration and chlorination system, so the only water lost is to evaporation.