On Build Garland Day, Wednesday, Jan. 13, the City backed a record investment from its residents with a record day of groundbreaking, sign-raising and celebration of new projects.
Garland is delivering on its $423.7 million bond program, even in a pandemic. City leaders made a socially distanced tour of five sites on Build Garland Day, with the public connected to the event via Facebook Live.
Build Garland Day’s first stop was the playground at Hall Park. At 24 parks all over Garland, one of four styles of playgrounds are being installed – traditional, nature play, themed play and adventure/fitness – as part of a $117.8 million investment in parks and recreation from the bond program. Hall Park will be getting new adventure/fitness play equipment and a picnic area with a shade structure.
"Our residents and our voters spoke very clearly during this bond process that our parks needed attention," Mayor Scott LeMay said. "We will be able to measure our return on investment through happy kids."
The second groundbreaking of Build Garland Day was the celebration of a new 18,000-square-foot police property and evidence building. It will provide safe and secure evidence processing settings for officers and staff with modern chain-of-custody protocols and twice the space of Garland’s existing facility.
Then, a sign was raised along Walnut Street, celebrating the relocation of Walnut Creek Branch Library. Voters have actually blessed this project twice, once in the bond election to fund replacing the current structure on nearby Edgewood Drive and then on Nov. 3, 2020, to approve Hollabaugh Park as the site for the new library. On the eve of Build Garland Day, Jan. 12, the Garland City Council approved a design agreement for Walnut Creek Branch Library. Construction is anticipated to start in mid-2022.
At Miller Road and Glenbrook Drive, ground was then broken on a project aimed to turn Rick Oden Park into a regional attraction. A 40,000-square-foot skatepark will include areas for street plaza style skating, bowl features and an area for learners.
"The skateboard community transcends age differences, racial differences and economic differences and that's so important," said Council Member Rich Aubin, who noted the input toward the project from the Garland Youth Council and the skateboarding community. "It's a microcosm of our bond program in that there's something for everyone. There is a place for everyone here in Garland and if you have needs, we see you and we hear you."
Rick Oden Park’s baseball history will be rejuvenated with a field featuring the largest dimensions of any in the city, targeting older baseball players who Garland's current fields do not accommodate. More than two miles of new trails and sidewalk connections are planned, as well as two new restroom buildings, a large playground with multiple features, new picnic and shade pavilions at both ends of the park, and a food truck and picnic plaza for vendors near the baseball field and skateboard facility.
City leaders put the wraps on the eventful Build Garland Day by raising the sign for Fire Station No. 7 at 1805 Pleasant Valley Road. One of three new stations being constructed through the bond program, it will replace a 35-year-old station nearby. Construction is anticipated to start in late 2024.
The largest bond program in City history was approved by voters in May 2019. Follow the progress of all our bond projects at BuildGarland.com.