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Murray Journal

Murray Parks and Rec Master Plan to be unveiled

Mar 16, 2020 02:03PM ● By Shaun Delliskave

Additional trails are part of the Murray Parks and Recreation Master Plan. (Photo courtesy Murray City)

By Shaun Delliskave | [email protected]

After a year of planning and of gathering Murray residents’ ideas for a new master plan for Murray City Parks and Recreation, the city is ready to release its findings. The 109-page report was put together by city staff with input from citizen boards and the results of a survey that was open to Murray residents. The new 10-year master plan will guide the priorities of the Parks Department.

Murray City owns 424 acres of parkland at 22 sites, which are maintained, managed and programmed by the Parks and Recreation Department. The city also has a substantial investment in significant facilities—including The Park Center, the Senior Recreation Center, and Murray Theater—that offer over 680,000 square feet of facility space.

According to the report, “Consistent with community priorities, 67% of all site recommendations address ways to enhance existing City parks. Approximately 18% are related to new parks, and another 15% propose development, renovation, and activation of other City-owned sites.”

The Parks and Rec Master plan was last updated in 1994. Since then, Murray’s boundary jumped eastward, incorporating areas such as Wheeler Farm; and its landmark smelter was demolished for a state-of-the-art medical center.

“If all projects in the Action Plan are implemented, the City would need approximately $47.7 million for capital projects plus approximately $1.5 million annually for added maintenance and operations. This investment will require the exploration of new funding sources, such as impact fees and potentially a new voter-approved funding measure.”

Leading all projects in the plan is to build new city parks and trails. “Maintain, repair, or replace worn or older park features” was ranked highest priority by survey respondents, well-above all other options. Murray City Park is currently replacing most of its pavilions and hopes to have the new facilities completed by the end of summer.

Second, Murray residents wanted to “add more or a greater variety of features in parks.” One of the most common requests from respondents is a splash pad. The report identified the outdoor Aquatics Center as the most likely spot to install such a feature. Respondents also request “destination playgrounds”—play areas with unique or interactive equipment for children to engage with.

The report identified areas within Murray where a new park could be installed. Except for a few neighborhoods, most residents live within a 10-minute walk of a city park. The prime candidate for a new park is Atwood subdivision (300 W. 6500 South), where the city owns property at the Jefferson Detention Basin. It was mentioned as a possible contender for the city’s first dog park.

“The Jefferson Detention Basin is a large, undeveloped greenspace that is dry for most of the year. Hillside amenities and facilities that can withstand water when flooded will substantially improve recreation opportunities for nearby neighbors,” the report said.

Also, another top candidate for a park is the Vinecrest subdivision (1200 E. 6200 South).  The report states, “Located on a few residential lots, the smaller Vinecrest Detention Basin could be activated through light development and pop-up activities to meet the needs of nearby neighbors.”

Other areas of development interest include creating a Vine Street Trail that would connect the Canal Trail to Murray Park and eventually westward toward the Jordan River Parkway.

The report also evaluated other assets within the Murray City system, such as expanding features and services to The Park Center. The former National Guard Armory, which the city owns, was looked at as a performance venue or reception facility.

Parks and Rec staff will present a finalized plan to the city council in March. The public can view the Parks and Recreation Master Plan Draft online at www.murray.utah.gov.

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