What $1.8 Million in New Park Acquisitions Says For the Fresno Job MarketBy hire-up-staffing in News and Updates
Fresno has often been critiqued as not having enough parks and green space, but all that is about to change. In a unanimous decision by the Fresno City Council, they have approved a $1.16 million bid last Thursday from Davis Moreno Construction Inc. for a brand new park in downtown Fresno.
Manuel Mollinedo, Fresno PARCS director, said last Friday in an interview that the new park to be located at Fulton and Calaveras will showcase and reflect the cultural arts district, saying it will focus on visual and performing arts.
“There will be a stage area covered in canopies that will really bring a lot of color,” he confirmed. He also said he hopes the park will complete within the next half year, especially noting that the cultural arts district has one of the most park-starved areas in Fresno.
Including permits, construction management and other contingencies, the total cost will be about $1.4 million. The city will cover approximately $250,000 of the cost, and most of the rest shall be covered by state grants.
More Parks on the Way
There will also be two more parks on the way, with Mollinedo saying there will also be two more improvements to be added to the council agenda. Just last month, the city council also approved the adoption of Almy and Roy Park (opened in August after a $350,000 fundraising event by Habitat for Humanity and other groups). For the next three years, Cargill Meat Solutions will pay for its maintenance, and then the city will assume the costs after that.
Another $335,000 bid from American Construction Engineers was also approved by the council. This amount will go to the creation of a splash play area at Vinland Park, located at Gettysburg and Woodrow avenues.
Mollinedo has two more splash area proposals in mind, namely Holmes Playground located at 212 S. First St., and Mosqueda Community Center which is near the fairgrounds. Both parks are south of Shaw Avenue. This is a great and important response to many peoples’ demands of more green space in south Fresno.
What It Means for Jobs and the Workforce
With a greener city, there is a high likelihood that people feel more compelled to living more positive lives. In addition, the focus on performance arts allows people in the city of Fresno who are either arts graduates or interested in performance arts in general to have more opportunities for both work and play.
It is projected that there will be approximately $655,000 in projected fiscal impact to the city courtesy of the aforementioned parks projects. According to Mollinedo, the cultural arts district in Fresno previously had only about half an acre of green space per 1,000 people.
In fact, last year, the park acreage ratio to 1,000 residents was 1.02 in south Fresno and 4.62 in north Fresno. This is way behind – the Trust for Public Land says that on average, there should be about 13.8 acres per 1,000 people for a city the size of Fresno. In fact, they had already ranked Fresno as the very last in parks and green space in their annual municipal survey for each of the past four years.
Mollinedo is positive about the latest park acquisitions and green-related updates, including the opening of Martin Ray Reilly and Inspiration parks in 2015. He believes that these point toward a major step forward for the city.
Residents have mixed but generally positive feelings about the changes. People who live near the proposed Cultural Arts District Park are looking forward to it finally coming to fruition, as the vacant lot’s sign shows an obviously altered completion date of “Summer 2016.”
With the place in the heart of an area with new residential and mixed-use developments, people have been mocking the lack of greenery and are awaiting for things to finally become reality.
A local resident from the Broadway complex, Chris Rocha, even said that this park was one of the amenities mentioned to them when they were looking at their apartment unit. “Here we are almost a year later, and it hasn’t quite gotten there yet,” he said.
On the upside, he is excited to see plans for the park finally moving forward. He observed that people had to drive into north Fresno just to find grass and greenery for themselves and for their pets, and even mentioned that previously, the area is almost exclusively filled with young and single residents. With the new park, it may just invite families to live and work in the area as well.
Looking for Work?
If you are looking for work in the Fresno area, contact us. We’ll help you find a job that suits your background and lifestyle, whether in the field of performing and visual arts or in other fields. CLICK HERE NOW to apply!