Project Goal: Park Experience and Identity
Golden Gate Heights Park is already used daily from morning till sunset. The jewel-like park’s open space is the center of the neighborhood. With the improvements proposed, the potential of its underutilized features will be maximized. Adventure Land will offer an opportunity for children and youth to engage in imaginative play with natural elements, a rarity in a dense urban setting-- perfect for a game of Pirates among the hollow log, tree stumps, and boulders. Adults can join while they supervise and socialize immersed in a soothing natural area. The family dog can join the fun and add to the communal experience. The toddler groups that frequent the park midday will no-doubt beeline to Adventure Land for a rich tactile experience and games of strength and balance.
The elderly, disabled, and families with strollers will reach the renovated field and picnic areas without difficulty or fear of falling thanks to the new accessible ramps and smooth paths. Finally, children will be able to play games on the renovated field without fear of breaking a leg.
The bulletin board in the proposed renovated social area at the main entry will foster community by announcing parties, fundraisers, volunteer clean-up days, coyote sightings, local classes and more. The proposed lower field furniture will promote more flexible use of an area that is currently underutilized, due in part to lack of amenities. The new social area will foster community and encourage all, particularly seniors and adults with baby carriers, to stay longer. While some family members play a game of tennis and others walk the dog, some can prepare lunch at the new lower field picnic table.
All generations will learn more about their park history, the native fauna and flora and ways to protect them through interpretive signage. Local schools can make the park an educational tour destination. We’ll post useful information about animals (e.g., dealing with coyotes; types of birds and protecting the green hairstreak butterfly from extinction). A map will show the vistas of the Pacific Ocean and Golden Gate Park, while two beautiful tiled stairway walks nearby draw in people from all over the city. Walking groups will be able to check out the signage and bulletin board before exploring the park.
Golden Gate Heights Park offers urban dwellers a taste of a wilderness experience as they take a break from their busy schedules to find solitude among the trees. Today, many seek the park to practice yoga or Tai Chi. The improved park aesthetics and features will increase park visitors and their sense of ownership and stewardship. With more to do, they’ll stay longer too!