The following petition was handed to Councilor Mike Layton on June 2, 2014. It was signed by almost 250 people, most of them residents of Montrose, Grace and surrounding streets. Support for the petition among those canvassed was nearly unanimous.
SAVE OUR NEIGHBOURHOOD PARK!
Toronto Parks and Recreation classifies Bickford Park as follows:
“Neighbourhood parks provide opportunities for passive recreation and limited types of active recreation amenities within a reasonable walking distance of intended users. Amenities include: seating areas; gardens; playgrounds; small sports fields; waterplay; and tennis courts.”
Plans are being made for redesigning Bickford Park. Despite being assured that residents and recreational park users would be given special consideration, there is now a possibility that designs will be finalized without further consultation.
Bickford Park needs improvements! Please support the following requests:
1. Neighbours and recreational park users must be consulted before developing any final plan.
2. A single diamond in Bickford Park, improved and designated for children’s baseball.
3. An ample-sized, fenced-in dog area.
4. A green oasis with trees, grass and benches, free space for informal field activities and a walking link through the park. Bickford Park must remain accessible for families, seniors, joggers, or outdoor education programs which raise children’s awareness of natural environments.
5. A path that leads people through rather than around the park.
We live here! We have a right to be heard! Sign our petition to ask Councillor Mike Layton to meet with us BEFORE plans for Bickford Park are finalized!
In a flyer distributed in the neighbourhood in July 2014, Councilor Layton announced that the north diamond in Bickford Park will be removed, and that two new diamonds for children’s baseball will be constructed in Eggleton Park. The new diamonds are already completed, while the north diamond in Bickford is to be removed in late August or September of 2014. This is a significant advance, and is to a large extent due to the petition signed by many residents and park users.
Now that this longstanding point of contention has been resolved, we will make sure that all users of the park have a say in the future design of Bickford park. In Eggleton Park, the problems of the Bickford diamonds, namely their use by adults, must not simply be transferred to the new location and interfere with pedestrian and recreational use of the broad path on the west side. In Bickford, there are many issues concerning the future design of the park, among them the location of a path, the size of the dog off-leash enclosure, and the areas for play and green space. Check this space for future updates!