New community park planned in North Tampa

A new family friendly county park is coming this fall to the Greater Carrollwood area.

After nearly a year of finalizing its conceptual design, construction is slated to begin next month on the new Carrollwood Village Community Park, at 13055 Delwood Road in Tampa.

The park replaces the site of the Dale Mabry Wastewater Treatment Plant, which is situated on 50 acres along the west side of North Dale Mabry Highway, just south of West Village Drive.

Construction is expected to begin next month on the new Carrollwood Village Community Park, at 13055 Delwood Road. It replaces the site of the Dale Mabry Wastewater Treatment Plant, which is situated on 50 acres along the west side of North Dale Mabry Highway, just south of West Village Drive. (File)

Hillsborough County Public Utilities is presently decommissioning and relocating the existing treatment plant infrastructure, which has been in operation for more than 40 years.

Everything associated with the treatment plant will be demolished with the exception of two reclaimed water tanks, pump stations, an administration building structure and fencing.

Details about the forthcoming park were unveiled during a March 6 pre-construction open house at the Carrollwood Cultural Center. County parks and recreation officials were on hand to answer questions and gather input from residents.

Described as a “passive” community park, the main amenities will include a dog park, multi-use walking trail, splash pad, playground, indoor community space, and picnic shelters.

Other features include a pond, an open lawn, restrooms and parking.

Each of those aspects were finalized and based on input gathered from Carrollwood residents in a series of community meetings dating back to 2015.

Officials say most of the park will be complete by October, with final touches targeted for December. A ribbon cutting is planned sometime this fall.

Speaking at the open house, Hillsborough County parks and recreation director Rick Valdez called the park a “very important project” for Carrollwood.

“We’ve been meeting on this for months, and I think we have a really good sense of what the community wants to see,” Valdez said.

Described as a ‘passive’ community park, main amenities for the Carrollwood Village Community Park will include a dog park, multi-use walking trail, splash pad, playground, indoor community space, and picnic shelters. Other features include a pond and open lawn, along with restrooms and parking. The Hillsborough County Commission approved the $6.5 million project last May. (Courtesy of Hillsborough County Parks & Recreation)

Park hours will normally be from sunrise to sunset, with staff on-site to facilitate programming and provide maintenance.

Based on renderings, the park’s main entrance will be off West Village Drive with a secondary entrance to the south, off Delwood Road. The two entrances will not connect, to avoid the potential for becoming a pass-through route. There will also be new pedestrian crossings on West Village Drive and pedestrian park access in the northeast corner of the park.

Offsite work includes re-striping West Village Drive, which includes a left-hand turn lane, deceleration lane and addition of the multi-use trail.

The Hillsborough County Commission approved the $6.5 million project last May.

If more funding becomes available, the county would look to construct an additional playground, an event center, a boardwalk and fishing dock, and a nature center. The items would be part of Phase II and perhaps a Phase III.

“Those are things we want to address; we just don’t have the money to do it right now,” said Kyla Booher, planning and development manager for the county’s parks and recreation department.

More could be on the way if at least one county commissioner gets his way, however.

Eric Denney, a legislative aide to Commissioner Ken Hagan, was at the meeting and said the commissioner is “going to work his tail off to get money in the budget” for Phase II of the park.

Hagan is a northwest area resident and longtime supporter of the park project.

“When everything is said and done, this should be a true community asset —something that will improve the standard of living here in Carrollwood,” Denney said.

The original idea for a new park in Carrollwood became a community-driven, grassroots effort after word spread four years ago about the retirement of the wastewater site.

Public comments on the Carrollwood Village Community Park will be accepted through March 20.

To provide feedback on the project, visit HCFLGov.formstack.com/forms/public_comment.

Published March 14, 2018

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