Project Playback: Alderbrook Pocket Park Playground Renovation

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For almost 20 years, Austin Parks Foundation has worked with the Friends of Alderbrook to improve Alderbrook Pocket Park (12444 Lamplight Village Ave.). The surrounding neighborhood had been designated high-need by Austin Parks and Recreation Department (PARD), and this undeveloped space was officially acquired by PARD in 2011. Over the years, the neighborhood advocated for a community garden, playground, trails, benches, tables, signage, and ongoing maintenance of their volunteer-built butterfly garden. APF’s relationship with the park began with a partnership with the Lady Bird Johnson Wildflower Center to install Harbiturf in 2014, a native grass mix that would provide low-maintenance turf and wildflower meadow in the empty field. Next, the group applied and received a $50,000 ACL Music Festival grant to install trees and a walking trail. In the Fall of 2018, APF awarded the Lamplight Community Garden Steering Committee $5,000 for the first phase of construction on the Lamplight Community Garden, which was largely constructed by the gardeners in the community and another $5,000 to the Friends of Alderbrook Park for continued improvements to their pollinator garden.

Also in September of 2018, The Friends of Alderbrook Park applied for Detailed Park Design Assistance, which was a new service offered to park adopter groups seeking design assistance by Austin Parks Foundation. APF awarded this design service to develop plans and a cost estimate for the playground and picnic area that was called out in the Vision Plan developed by the City of Austin Parks and Recreation Department. The plan and associated costing was developed with community input and completed in June 2019.

Park rendering showing playscape structures, landscaping elements and new pavilion Friends of Alderbrook Park presented with a check from Austin Parks Foundation - $100,000With a plan and budget estimate in hand, the Friends of Alderbrook Park applied for an ACL Impact Grant in 2019. In early 2020, APF awarded a $100,000 grant to support the park playground project and secured Parkland Dedication Funding to make the playground a reality.  We are pleased that Alderbrook Pocket Park has a new playground which includes traditional play equipment, boulders, a pavilion, and nature play elements. Alderbrook Pocket Park also received $426,177 in Parkland Dedication funding from the City of Austin, $17,167.00 from a COA Urban Forestry Grant and a pledge of $2,500 from Friends of Alderbrook.