The Arc of Brown County’s plans to create an inclusive playground at Allcorn Park for disabled and non-disabled children are moving forward.
Representatives of The Arc — an organization intended to serve people with disabilities — updated the Brownwood Municipal Development District board Tuesday on its plans to create a $560,895 playground over three phases completed by November 2021.
Groundbreaking on the first phase is projected for April 2020.
The Arc has been working to formalize its plan for the park and has secured a vendor, chosen equipment and is involved in fund-raising, Arc representatives told BMDD board members.
Arc representatives initially made a presentation to Brownwood City Council members in January, who approved the use of the park as the site for the new playground equipment.
The Arc has expanded the plans beyond what it presented to the council in January.
“We saw a need in our community as there really aren’t any inclusive-type play areas in any of the other parks,” Michelle Thomas, chairwoman of the Arc board, told the BMDD board.
Arc board member Shawntay Hubbard gave the BMDD board a presentation that included a video depicting how the park will look. “All-inclusive play just means that everybody comes together to play,” Hubbard said. “It’s all about families, kids, individuals with special needs and those that don’t (have special needs).”
The following tasks have been completed, BMDD board members were told:
• Toured other inclusive play facilities.
• Researched equipment to determine what will best meet the community’s needs.
• Talked with Brownwood school district officials on how the park will support the children of Woodland Heights Elementary School.
• Chosen a vendor.
• Participate in meetings with Brownwood city officials.
According to a proposed timeline:
• Phase 1 — groundbreaking April 1, 2020, with completion July 1, 2020. The projected cost of Phase 1 is $208,140. The Arc has about $70,000 committed to the project, and in-kind contributions from the City of Brownwood are about $50,000.
Phase 1 includes zip swings for all ages.
• Phase 2 — groundbreaking Jan. 1, 2021, with completion March 1, 2021. Phase 2 includes play equipment for ages 5 to 12. The projected cost is $190,809.
• Phase 3 — groundbreaking is Sept. 1, 2021 with completion Nov. 1, 2021. Phase 3 is for age 6 to 23 months and 2 to 5. Projected cost is 4161,946.