The Concord, N.C., City Council has appointed Assistant City Manager Lloyd Payne to take over the post of city manager following Brian Hiatt's retirement. "His 17 years of local government management and his distinguished service in the N.C. National Guard make him a uniquely qualified city manager," said Mayor Bill Dusch.
Plans are underway to revitalize the Los Angeles River and its surrounding communities, but that could bring green gentrification and push out longtime residents, notes Jon Christensen of the University of California at Los Angeles' Institute of the Environment and Sustainability. "Do we want the river and its parks to become like Central Park or the High Line, both surrounded on nearly all sides by some of the most expensive real estate on the planet?" he writes.
The parks department of Leander, Texas, is looking into expanding its facilities to accommodate an increase in the number of children signing up for the city's Little League program, which has nearly doubled from 2017. Parks and Recreation Director Mark Tummons says a comprehensive plan is in the works to address the city's parks needs and should be completed in about eight to 10 months.
When looking for developers, promoters, programmers and operators for publicly owned entertainment venues and events, it's important to craft effective requests for proposals, notes consultant Adam Friedman. "It's not only about low-bid or highest-financial guarantees, but also about selecting a contractor who understands your mission, can execute in compliance with all the applicable requirements and guidelines, and remains focused, from start to finish, on the production of this important part of your annual schedule and budget," he writes.
Trends in playground design include themes, inclusivity for children of all abilities and adventure playgrounds. Building these playgrounds requires new ways to raise funds as well, such as reaching out to large corporations for donations, applying for grants or using crowd-funding sources.
The Yellowstone River Recreation Project Advisory Committee has reviewed a number of projects proposed for the Yellowstone River and is weighing funding decisions. More than $2 million has been set aside for improvement projects following a $12 million settlement with ExxonMobil over a pipeline rupture in 2011 that poured oil into the river.
A playground has opened at Etowah River Park in Canton, Ga., with equipment available for children of all abilities. The wheelchair-accessible playground includes swings with safety harnesses, play panels featuring sign language and braille letters, and a side-loading spinner.
Rhodius Park in Indianapolis has opened a sensory room featuring a dozen activities for children with disabilities, including a rock wall, a ball pit and swings. The Therapeutic Recreation and Sensory Room was created for calming activities and activities that boost alertness.
Decatur, Ill., officials have accepted a bid for base work on a large playground at Nelson Park, expected to open in a few months. The facility is being funded, in part, with a matching grant from playground equipment supplier GameTime as well as an Open Space Lands Acquisition and Development grant from the state.
Emergency services for Auburn and Cayuga County, N.Y., are discussing plans to consolidate into one facility, which would be smaller than an earlier proposal. The Auburn Fire Department is moving to a new facility, and the city and county are discussing relocating the Emergency Management Office and E9-1-1 office to the location.
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