A Park Vision Completed for a New Park in South River Gardens

Parks are good for people, good for the environment, and good for communities! Parks are treasured neighborhood amenities where children can play safely, friendships start, and memories are formed. Parks are all about community, and that’s why community leadership and involvement is so important when designing new parks.

Park Pride’s Park Visioning process puts community at the center of the conversation and helps build a shared vision for a park based on the ideas and concerns of the whole community.

In 2020, the City of Atlanta purchased one acre of land in the South River Gardens community at the corner of Hutchens Road SE & King Smith Road SE for use as a public park. Through neighborhood meetings, surveys, and engagement, Park Pride’s professional park designers worked closely with the South River Gardens residents and community association over the summer of 2021 to produce a conceptual plan for this new greenspace!


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This project is just one example of Park Pride’s Visioning program, which has completed 46 comprehensive park plans – very likely including one for a park near you! This is the kind of work you are making possible when you support Park Pride. Help us continue this work by making a gift today. 

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Guiding Principles for the Park Design

Throughout the park visioning process, it is important that the community’s hopes remain at the center of the plan. That is why the visioning team transforms those hopes into a set of guiding principles that become a touchstone for the community if conflict arises during the park planning process. Every specific choice that is made in the planning process must support one or more of the guiding principles. These guiding principles can also help calm fears that the park planning process will result in changes that are contrary to the desires of the community.

The guiding principles determined with the South River Gardens community for this new park space include:

  • Creating multi-generational recreation opportunities so that everyone has something to enjoy in the park.
  • Prioritizing personal safety and crime prevention measures to create a park that is a safe place for all.
  • Providing a positive, welcoming outdoor community space by offering guidelines and infrastructure for a clean, well-maintained park.
  • And preserve the quiet, calm qualities of the neighborhood while creating a place of beauty and civic pride.

Park Vision Plan

We are proud to present the final vision plan below, based on the survey results and feedback on the two concept plans. This plan responds to the guiding principles above and includes:

  • Playground equipment
  • Walking path
  • Fencing
  • Fitness equipment
  • Picnic pavilion and grills
  • Seating and waste receptacles
  • Clear entrances and signage
  • Preserve existing trees

Click on the image above to download and view a pdf file of the plan. After you’ve had a chance to study it, click the button to tell us what you think should be prioritized for construction!

*NOTE – You will need the computer program Adobe Acrobat Reader DC to view the pdf files.
You can download it for free HERE.

Now that the park visioning plan is complete, the community will use it to guide the development of and future investments in this greenspace, side-by-side with the Department of Parks and Recreation and Park Pride.

We look forward to seeing the dreams for this greenspace become a reality! 

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