By Thuy-An Nguyen
Boston University News Service
Mother’s Rest Park in Dorchester is scheduled to undergo renovations beginning this summer and is expected to be completed in the summer of 2023.
The project, with a construction budget of about $1.4 million, includes the addition of a play lot, seating areas, pathways, landscaping, site furnishings, and infrastructure.
“We are thrilled to be collaborating with the community on a refreshed Mother’s Rest Park,” said Ryan Woods, commissioner of the Boston Parks and Recreation department. “Parks are more important than ever, and we are proud to be investing in a safe, beautiful space that will provide opportunities for play and bring neighbors together.”
The city of Boston has been consulting Deborah Myers Landscaping Architecture on the redesign of the park.
“We’re hoping to create a nice collection of activities,” said Deborah Myers, principal landscape architect at DMLA. “We wouldn’t want just swings, or just climbing elements, we want the pieces to come together to create a really great play story.”
The city of Boston and DMLA have actively been involving community members in the redesign process through public community meetings, where attendees voted on what features they would like to see added or changed in the park.
The meetings, led by Myers and Lauren Bryant, a project manager for the city of Boston, introduced attendees to the construction plan and previewed prospective design features.
The last design meeting was held April 7, where residents were able to provide input on the final proposed features before the park goes into construction this summer.
Among those features were playgrounds for children ages 2-5, children ages 5-12, a teen area, exercise equipment, a water play feature, and a painting on the park’s central stairs.
Attendees expressed excitement about these new additions during the meetings.
“If there’s something that I don’t have at home, it brings me out to the park,” said an attendee who identified themselves as “Lumas Joseph Helaire” in the fourth virtual meeting. “That’s what I love about it, it brings you out and gets you involved in the community.”
Bryant and Myers opened up the end of the meeting for questions, and several attendees expressed their gratitude for their efforts to involve the Dorchester community in the renovation project.
“I feel like you guys have listened to us,” said an attendee who identified themself as “Theresa” in the virtual meeting. “I feel like a lot of our ideas have been integrated into this project and it is greatly appreciated, so thank you.”
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