Town Plans New Children’s Playground at Waveny

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Here's the all-abilities fitness station and general area. Credit: Michael Dinan

Public works officials say they plan to request funding in upcoming budget talks for a new children’s playground at Waveny.

It would be located near an existing exercise equipment area that also is due for an upgrade, Public Works Director Tiger Mann told members of the Selectmen’s Advisory Committee on Buildings and Infrastructure during their regular meeting Monday.

“The existing exercise equipment next to the large parking lot at Waveny needs to be replaced and we are looking at putting in a children’s playground, as well, at the exact same time, adjacent to that,” Mann said during the meeting, held via videoconference.

According to a draft DPW budget document that Mann shared, the combined cost of replacing the exercise equipment and installing a new playground at Waveny is $429,000. It is one of several parks- and fields-related bonding requests that Public Works plans to make for capital projects funded in fiscal year 2022. Others include $300,000 as a town contribution toward a New Canaan Athletic Foundation master plan, $150,000 in irrigation upgrades, $112,000 for Bristow Bird Sanctuary and $60,000 for field improvements, according to the document.

It wasn’t clear how large the planned new children’s playground would be, how many pieces of equipment it would have, how much of the $429,000 would go toward it, when it could be ready or whether the town would seek to fund it through a public-private partnership, as has been done successfully at Mead Park. 

Committee members asked Mann no follow-up questions on the project.

Waveny visitors often mistake the exercise station for a playground, and misuse it as such. In fact, it’s an all-abilities fitness station, opened in 2011 thanks to supporters such as Karl Chevrolet, C&H Auto, Joe’s Pizza, New Canaan Community Foundation and what is now Bankwell.

Budget meetings are expected to get underway next week at the selectmen level, with a final Town Council vote scheduled for March 31.

4 thoughts on “Town Plans New Children’s Playground at Waveny

  1. Since a hefty $429,000 is being requested for Waveny upgrades to the playground area, what about requesting money to take care of the dire needs over at Kiwanis Park?? That park is used and needs to be kept in presentable condition with upgrades. The town needs to take care of Kiwanis Park also. It is a hidden gem.

    • I wonder how many playgrounds there are in New Canaan now at the various parks and schools (public and private). Are they being properly maintained and do they get a lot of use? What are the projected lifespans and what would it cost to improve and/or rebuild them over the next decade or so? The price tag associated with the Waveny idea is daunting.
      I agree that Kiwanis is a hidden gem but has been neglected and under publicized. There is a very nice children’s playground there and Kiwanis is a lot closer to where people live than is Waveny, which is appropriate for a small children’s playground. Waveny is a town treasure and there is a lot there for people of many ages but perhaps given the price tag and needs elsewhere, especially including Kiwanis, this money could be more wisely spent after further consideration of town wide needs.

  2. There isn’t a more perfect spot in New Canaan for a playground! Waveny is used by the widest population of our community. From young children, seniors, dog owners, teen and adult sports teams and anyone wanting to enjoy nature are it’s finest. This is a terrific effort and I do hope our community gets fully behind this.

  3. I echo the comment from resident Kathy Mitchell. Kiwanis Park is not maintained to the same standard as Waveny, Mead and Irwin. As stated by several residents at the January 7, 2021 Park and Rec meeting, Kiwanis needs regular brush removal along the entire park, playground and nature trails. A realtor commented that she brings prospective buyers to Kiwanis Beach. Please DPW and Park and Rec let’s clean up this park and adequately fund the budget for Kiwanis Park.

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