Little Park, Big Construction - NBC 7 San Diego

Little Park, Big Construction

Mission Hills Park taking too long to build, according to residents



    Residents in a Mission Hills neighborhood have been working for six years to get a pocket park in their neighborhood.

    After the long wait, construction is now two weeks from completion at the Lewis Street Pocket Park.
    The park is a third of an acre in size and has been in production since September.

    Being such a small space, residents are wondering why it is taking so long to build?

    "It’s been astonishing that it’s taken seven months and they built the Vons across the street in 11 months,” said resident Joey Keeler.

    Residents Frustrated With Park Construction

    [DGO] Residents Frustrated With Park Construction
    Mission Hills Resident Joey Keeler talks to NBC 7 about a park that has yet to be finished in his neighborhood. Darren Greenhalgh Deputy Director for San Diego Architectural Engineering and Parks says the park is scheduled to be done by the end of the month. Elena Gomez reports.
    (Published Friday, March 16, 2012)

    Keeler lives across the street from where the park will be, he said the construction process has been unorganized and inconvenient.

    “They’ve taken over our parking lot and people’s spaces. They aren’t listening to our concerns about rock placements. There is also a lot of dust and noise.”

    The city says parks like this are typically given a six month contract to complete.

    This plan also factors in rainy days that can play a role in building when contractors aren't able to work.

    Still, the city says this project is going according to plan.

    “It’s expected to be done by the end of the month. The contractors are in full compliance with everything. So, I don’t know if there’s anything really unusual about this construction project. It’s on schedule,” said Darren Greenhalgh, Deputy Director of Architectural Engineering and Parks.

    The city also says they visit the site every day the contractors are working. Neighbors did say they noticed irrigation being taken out and replaced.

    The city says sometimes contractors have to fix projects to the city's standards but that this is on the contractors and does not cost the city any additional money.

    “Construction takes time. It started in September. He’s in compliance. I don’t know what to tell the residents other than that six to seven is a normal timeframe to get it done.”
    This time frame may be normal for a city project but for residents like Joey, this seems a bit long.
    “At first I was excited. My home value would go up and I could walk my dog, now it’s been not so nice.”

    The project will be completed by the end of the month. Residents will have to wait an additional three months for plant establishment before they can use the park.

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