Parks and Recreation Commission

Recent Articles

Parks Officials by 6-0 Vote Back Garden Club’s Plan for ‘Parterre Garden’ at Waveny

Parks officials on Wednesday night voted unanimously in support of a longstanding nonprofit organization’s plan to redesign, re-plant and otherwise improve a prominent garden at Waveny. The New Canaan Garden Club’s plan for the “parterre garden”—located east of the balcony of Waveny House (down that first set of stairs, en route to the sledding hill)—is “timeless and classic” and “engages both visually and physically,” according to Tori Frazer, a member of the organization’s Waveny Walled Garden Committee. “This has always been a formal garden,” Frazer told members of the Parks & Recreation Commission at their regular meeting, held at Lapham Community Center. “We intend for it to stay a formal garden. All the plantings and the plans are classic and will stand the test of time.”

The commission voted 6-0 in support of the plan. Continue Reading →

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Officials Weigh New Parking, Traffic Proposal for Mead Park

Town officials are weighing a proposed parking and traffic plan for Mead Park that would preserve its one-way entrance and exit while making other major changes to how and where motorists can go and pull in. Under a proposal from local landscape architecture firm Keith E. Simpson Associates, traffic in the first long area that motorists enter from Park Street would become two-way, while the often-disregarded traffic island in the center of the park would be re-shaped so that it’s more intuitive to motorists, and new curbing would come to a second traffic island near the Apple Cart at Mead Park Lodge so that nobody parks directly on top of it. During a Nov. 8 presentation to the Parks & Recreation Commission, the firm’s Bill Pollack said it was possible to have 90-degree parking for the long stretch along the pond, though some officials said they’d prefer to have more comfortable angled parking there, even if it means losing some spaces. Commissioner Francesca Segalas said she would prefer angled parking because it’s far easier to open a front door “because the front of the next car is not even next to you.”

The proposal also calls for new parallel parking spaces beyond the right-field wall of the large baseball field, new directional arrows on the pavement and crosshatched areas between newly designated handicapped spaces and fire lanes. Continue Reading →

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Garden Club, Landscape Architect at Odds Over Future of ‘Parterre Garden’ at Waveny

New Canaan should pause before approving a plan that would see a formal garden at Waveny house changed from its original design, according to local landscape architects. Located directly east of the balcony out back of the 1912-built Waveny house, the parterre garden is “the most important formal garden in town,” an “historically significant” area that “deserves a great deal of thought before it gets radically changed,” Keith Simpson told members of the Parks & Recreation Commission at their most recent meeting. “That configuration of the boxwood hedge has been there for over 100 years and I think it has stood the test of time,” Simpson said at the Nov. 8 meeting, held at Lapham Community Center. “And also, the Olmsted office is probably the best known firm in the history of landscape architecture in the country. Continue Reading →

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‘Both Classic and Modern’: New Canaan Garden Club Pursues New Planting Plan for ‘Parterre’ Garden at Waveny

One of New Canaan’s most venerable nonprofit organizations is seeking town approvals to improve a conspicuous area just behind Waveny House by re-planting it and adding benches for park users to enjoy. The New Canaan Garden Club since last year has sought to introduce a low-maintenance, deer-proof boxwood design for the parterre garden east of the balcony behind Waveny House—an area that currently is a “pass-through” for visitors, according to the organization’s president, Ellen Zumbach, but could be far more. “It is the entrance in a lot of ways to the park and the intention was to take you through and down the stairs and have a wonderful experience in your park,” Zumbach told members of the Parks & Recreation Commission at their Oct. 11 meeting, held at Lapham Community Center. “But I also felt that if we opened up the parterres so that it allowed for air and movement around them, that they could take their time getting down the stairs and enjoy what is an incredible view of the fields from the north and west wall.”

Zumbach and Tori Frazer of Club’s Waveny Walled Garden Committee presented a design to the commission to replace what currently are boxwood plantings with annuals in the middle, with additional plantings around the perimeter of a brick wall there. Continue Reading →

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Parks Officials: 504 People with 701 Dogs Now Registered for Spencer’s Run, Mostly New Canaan

In the fifth year since New Canaan began requiring canine owners to register their pets in order to use the dog run at Waveny, 504 people have done so, officials said this week. Currently, 701 dogs are registered for Spencer’s Run, according to Kit Devereaux, a member of the Parks & Recreation Commission who serves as a liaison to the popular facility located next to the paddle hut. New Canaanites account for about 56 percent of those with their dogs registered and Recreation Director Steve Benko “has a program that he set up that really is making a difference,” Devereaux said during a regular meeting of the commission, held Wednesday night at Lapham Community Center. “Dogs dig, as we all know, and then people complain. But Steve has—with dog park money—set up a program where someone comes in and fills the holes and seeds it. Continue Reading →

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