Additions are coming to the Wellesley Splash Pad, as township council approved enhancements to the Wellesley Community Centre play area. In anticipation of the park’s opening in mid-June, the Wellesley Lions Club will cover the cost of additional benches and landscaping plants for shade, as well as a new gazebo.
Jen Sommer, Lions member and splash park committee representative, noted community requests for more seating and shade areas in her presentation to council on Tuesday night. The gazebo was proposed as a memorial for Melissa Flynn, a committee member who died of a cardiac arrest in November 2011 at age 32.
“She was very instrumental in all the planning and fundraising and building of the project, so that was a real loss to our community,” Sommer told council.
“It’s a big structure for a memorial, but it was her site and her vision, and I think it’s appropriate for the amount of work that she put into that project.”
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Wellesley landscaper Derek Brick worked with the committee to draft a plan for the gazebo, trees, and benches, which may eventually be used as memorials. (The Wellesley Horticultural Society will dedicate a tree in memory of their late member Marjorie Runstedler). Sommer said the design includes “about a dozen additional trees and half a dozen additional benches.” Wellesley director of facilities Brad Voisin confirmed that there would be room for the additions.
While splash park operations have largely been taken over by the Lions Club, the splash park committee periodically “brainstorms” ideas, noted Sommer. The estimated cost of the additions is $9,000, including $6,000 for the gazebo. “We’re hoping that we can run it through our splash park account so that we can get back some of the HST by ordering through township,” said Sommer, who hopes to bring the cost down to $7,700. No fundraising will be required.
Council approved the enhancements unanimously, and also pledged to review and determine suitable locations for the enhancements, to be handled by Voisin.