Q&A from Speak Up for Our Parks Meeting

Are there any forms of surveillance in any of the parks that were favored in the polls? If so which one would you say which park is highly more watched?

There are surveillance cameras throughout a few of Town parks, including Charter Oak and Northwest Park. Requests to view footage for a particular time and location are handled through the Town’s Information Systems department. The Master Plan could potentially suggest surveillance of some parks where appropriate.

How will you have an equal balance of nature and parks?

The masterplan will primarily focus on parks and active recreation, but open space will be included as well. The plan will incorporate how to better connect passive and active recreation areas in town.

Considering the climate that we are living in at this time, would increasing community gardens or building outdoor classrooms be included in the assessments?

Great question. The Master Plan could consider gathering feedback from school officials on the idea of outdoor classroom space. Additional garden areas in different parts of Town may be appropriate.

Has any thought been given to Leiber Field off Love Lane?

There has not been discussion or requests from Little League regarding this field. It is a private setting for a field which is nice but has limited parking. This may be a location for future lighting if the need/demand was ever there for another lit LL field.

I agree, would there be an opportunity to create more spaces for nature appreciation? spaces for nature respite

The masterplan will have a trails and connectivity portion that will address how to better connect active and passive recreation areas within town to one another. One element that could be addressed is creating additional spaces with existing Town parks and open space for areas such as bird watching and other passive actives for nature appreciation.

Is there any type of work that you are planning to do in order to preserve the wildlife in these areas?

The preservation of Manchester’s wildlife is an important element in the planning process for any project that has the potential to disrupt the habitat, feeding areas, or migration routes of existing native populations of animals. As the plans for the parks are developed this consideration will carry weight during the design and review process. The future design of certain park elements may provide a unique opportunity to asses and, possibly, enhance wildlife habitat elements. Healthy wildlife populations in our parks should be encouraged not discouraged.

I was also curious if there was possibly a way to designate an area to smoking, to keep it away from large groups of children as well as just large groups of people in general. As a person with asthma I feel it may be beneficial to the general public.

This issue was discussed among the Board of Directors several years ago and a smoking ban was not considered a solution. For the most part, people that smoke stay away from the general public and are generally respectful of non-smokers. The Town allows groups that rent or apply for use of our parks/fields to manage smoking at their event (for example, Little League and the Soccer club do not allow it at their events) and is a question asked on the permit application for Town facilities.

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