Bloomington: Building Trades Park Master Plan Highlights Accessibility

Bloomington, Ind. ~ Bloomington, Ind. - The Board of Park Commissioners was presented with a Master Plan for the future development of Building Trades Park during their regular meeting on May 21. The park, which was originally a stone quarry and became a city park in 1949, has been in need of updates and improvements.

The Master Plan was developed by Mader Design, who began work on the project in 2023. In order to gather input from the community, two public meetings were held and feedback was collected from over 200 individuals online.

According to Parks and Recreation Administrator Tim Street, the final Master Plan will not be a construction document but rather a guide for making cohesive decisions about construction in the park. It will also ensure that the needs of both neighbors and park users are being met.

One of the main challenges for the park is its history as a stone quarry, which has resulted in numerous grade changes throughout the area. Additionally, aging infrastructure such as picnic shelters and playground equipment installed in 2003 are also in need of attention.

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To address accessibility issues, funds from the American Rescue Plan Act (ARPA) have been allocated for reconstruction of a ramp that runs from Second Street to the picnic shelter. Any remaining funds may be used for a new and more visible picnic shelter that is also accessible.

The Master Plan also includes concepts for pickleball courts, native plantings, a "skate spot" for skateboards, and space for public art. These additions aim to make Building Trades Park more diverse and appealing to all members of the community.

In addition to these improvements at Building Trades Park, there are plans for a new one-acre urban park called "Hopewell Commons" to open in late 2024 south of Second Street between South Rogers and South Morton Streets west of Seminary Square Kroger. This new park will feature trees, greenspace, and a play structure but will not have mature trees or sport courts like Building Trades Park. The close proximity of these two parks will provide a variety of active and passive uses for community members from surrounding neighborhoods and the future Hopewell development on the site of the former IU Health Bloomington Hospital.

For more information about the Building Trades Park Master Plan or upcoming park improvement projects, interested individuals can contact Bloomington Parks and Recreation at 812-349-3700 or, or visit the Parks Project Update web page.

Filed Under: Government, City

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