Spiritbrook Park in Redmond will be closed from Aug. 15 through October for construction and improvement projects. The 40-year-old park has had a longtime drainage problem due to the peat soil naturally found in the area

Spiritbrook Park in Redmond will be closed from Aug. 15 through October for construction and improvement projects. The 40-year-old park has had a longtime drainage problem due to the peat soil naturally found in the area

Spiritbrook Park will close from Aug. 15 to October for improvement projects

Spiritbrook Park at 6500 151st Ave. N.E. in Redmond will be closed from Aug. 15 through October for an extensive construction and improvement project.

Spiritbrook Neighborhood Park in Redmond will be closed from Monday through October for an extensive construction and improvement project.

The work updating this 40-year-old park, located at at 6500 151st Ave. N.E., is detailed in the master plan developed in 2010 with input from neighborhood residents. The park has a long-standing problem with wet soils that make parts of it too soggy to play in most of the year, according to a city press release.

“It’s been almost since the park was built, since the neighborhood was built,” senior park planner B. Sanders about the park’s drainage problem.

She said the cause is the peat soil, which retains water, that is naturally found in the area.

“It just hasn’t worked well over time,” Sanders said. “Even in August, that field is pretty wet.”

According to the press release, the existing play field will be renovated by removing the wet peat soil, replacing it with a free-draining sandy soil and adding an underground drainage system. Although the field will be a little smaller than it is today, it will be greatly improved and usable most of the year, which Sanders said is their goal.

Drainage in the Spiritbrook neighborhood has long been an problem and improvements to the drainage system in the park will address some of these issues. These improvements include installation of an underground drainage system, abandonment of the existing storm system along the park’s eastern edge and construction of a new 30-inch storm drain system across the southern boundary and along 151st Avenue Northeast. In addition to draining, this system will also treat the water.

The cost of the park improvements as well as the neighborhood drainage system is $1.59 million.

Sanders said this portion of the project will be a joint project with the city’s public works department and the main reason the park will be closed during construction.

With construction and improvement projects such as this one, Sanders said there is a master plan process that includes two or three community meetings for public input. It was because of these meetings that the city has incorporated a small wetland into the park’s design plan. Sanders said residents expressed some concern regarding the wetland, located in the corner of the site, because children would often play in the area. In response, a trail has been included in the plan and will be located near the wetland. Boundaries will be clearly marked so people can look in but know not to enter.

Sanders said the park’s play area will be updated and expanded to contain the latest in play equipment.

“It’s just out of date and nobody’s using it anymore,” she said about the current equipment, which is about as old as the park.

Spiritbrook will also have a small picnic shelter and additional seating, which will be new to the park. The pickleball and basketball courts will still be there when the park reopens, but slightly rearranged. Spiritbrook will also have a loop trail that encircles most of the park.

This is a very weather sensitive site and most of the improvements need to be constructed during the driest part of the year. To accommodate the construction, the park will be closed from Monday to October.

“Historically, this is a good time to do projects,” Sanders said.

During most of the construction, the City of Redmond must close the pedestrian path between 152nd Avenue Northeast and the park as well. However, when possible, this path will be open to maintain easy access to Ben Rush Elementary School.

For more information, contact Sanders at (425) 556-2328 or bbsanders@redmond.gov.

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