by Dennis Dalman
The Sartell Park Commission members and city staff are seeking ways to improve Creekview Park, but first they need input from city residents, especially from the people who live near that park in southwest Sartell.
Sartell City Planner Nate Keller is encouraging people to take an online survey concerning Creekview Park. Copies of the survey can also be obtained at Sartell City Hall. Once the survey results are collected, Keller will share them with the members of the Park Commission and residents. Keller said a community conversation will take place at 6:30 p.m. Tuesday, July 24, in Creekview Park during which the survey results will be shared with residents followed by input from those gathered. It is just one of many community conversations Keller and the Park Commission sponsors each year with the goal of improving the city’s parks based on what residents want.
The online survey can be taken at www.surveymonkey.com/creekviewpark
There are five questions on the survey with room to type in suggestions. Taking the survey requires only three to five minutes.
Creekview Park is at 1504 Lavender Ave. S. The neighborhood is situated north and east of the city’s southwest water treatment plant on CR 4. That neighborhood park and surrounding area are in “Park Neighborhood 8,” one of 10 neighborhood designations mapped by the city. One need not live in that area to take the survey, Keller noted.
The current amenities at Creekview Park include playground equipment, shade trees, picnic tables and green opens spaces.
On the survey, there are suggestions respondents can check as to what else they would like in the park: more playground equipment, a community garden, a pathway from playground to sidewalks, more picnic tables and benches, public art and more landscaping.
During the past two years, similar surveys and meetings were conducted for three other Sartell parks: Morningstar, Meadow Lake and Sabre Oaks. Minor improvements were made, such as more picnic tables and a pathway. As more funds become available, more improvements can be made, and thanks to the surveys and meetings, city staff knows which amenities are wanted and/or needed by residents.
Keller said the meetings are called community conversations because that is what they do. They initiate open-ended conversations between residents and a variety of city employees. Each park meeting is attended by members of the police department, planning and zoning, public works and city hall staff. And the meetings, Keller added, can turn from focus on park needs to anything the residents want to ask, suggest or talk about.
“It’s a form of city outreach,” he said, “and it really helps to break down barriers. The turnouts for the community conversations have been really good.”
Author: Dennis Dalman
Dalman was born and raised in South St. Cloud, graduated from St. Cloud Tech High School, then graduated from St. Cloud State University with a degree in English (emphasis on American and British literature) and mass communications (emphasis on print journalism). He studied in London, England for a year (1980-81) where he concentrated on British literature, political science, the history of Great Britain and wrote a book-length study of the British writer V.S. Naipaul. Dalman has been a reporter and weekly columnist for more than 30 years and worked for 16 of those years for the Alexandria Echo Press.