Tag Archives: City of Austin Parks and Recreation Department

Wednesday, April 14, 2021 by Sean Saldaña

Park rangers continue reworking operations ahead of summer season

In a memo sent to City Council last week, Parks and Recreation Director Kimberly McNeeley provided an update about PARD’s upcoming summer operations, detailing “Covid-19 modified protocols, winter storm recovery challenges and general operational details for the season.” The update…

Thursday, March 4, 2021 by Sean Saldaña

PARD begins to reimagine public safety

Last summer, in the wake of protests against the police killings of Mike Ramos and George Floyd, Austin City Council announced its Reimagining Public Safety initiative. A timeline was released with the goal of reforming “public safety over the years, including conducting…

Monday, March 1, 2021 by Sean Saldaña

PARD director estimates $1 million in weather-related damages

At last week’s Parks and Recreation Board meeting, Parks and Recreation Department Director Kimberly McNeeley presented the most recent director’s report for the department, highlighting PARD’s response to the historic winter storms and the power outages in the region. According to McNeeley,…

Thursday, February 25, 2021 by Sean Saldaña

Austin Parks Foundation gives an update on Zilker train restoration

The Austin Parks Foundation has laid out its plans to restore the beloved train formerly known as the Zilker Zephyr, which ceased operations last year. In January 2020, after more than two decades in operation, the owners of the Zephyr…

Wednesday, February 17, 2021 by Sean Saldaña

PARD gives update on cemetery improvement plans

Last September, around 15 gravestones were vandalized with blue paint at Evergreen Cemetery in East Austin, the city’s first municipal graveyard for Black residents when it was founded in 1926. Commenting on the event, Mayor Steve Adler tweeted that the…

Wednesday, February 10, 2021 by Sean Saldaña

Parks department needs 600 lifeguards by May

In anticipation of the upcoming swim season, Parks and Recreation Department Director Kimberly McNeeley submitted a memorandum to City Council on Jan. 22 that contained an update on maintenance and staffing in the city’s aquatics department. The memo states that the…

Tuesday, February 2, 2021 by Chad Swiatecki

Parks department considers ways to standardize its partnerships

The Parks and Recreation Department is continuing its work creating uniformity and standards in partnerships with nonprofit organizations that are expected to play a larger role in maintaining and improving parks facilities in the coming years. At last week’s Parks and…

Monday, January 11, 2021 by Jo Clifton

Covid impacted Austin parks concessions

Like many other enterprises, concessions operating in Zilker Park and along Lady Bird Lake suffered various financial impacts last year due to Covid-19, according to a report from the city’s Parks and Recreation Department. Gross sales generated by Town Lake Park concessions fell…

Tuesday, December 15, 2020 by Jonathan Lee

Citing disrepair, Council removes public artworks from display

Art left out in the elements doesn’t last forever. That’s why City Council just delisted five worn-out pieces of public art, including the Bicentennial Fountain at Vic Mathias Shores; LAB, the series of yellow sculptures along the Lance Armstrong Bikeway; and…

Tuesday, December 8, 2020 by Sean Saldaña

Discussions continue about Hancock Golf Course’s insolvency

Parks and Recreation Assistant Director Anthony Segura and Division Manager for Golf Operations Kevin Gomillion gave an update on the community engagement status of the Hancock Golf Course’s revenue troubles at the Dec. 4 special Parks and Recreation Board meeting.…

Tuesday, November 17, 2020 by Jackson Barton

New groups tee up, face off in ongoing Hancock golf course discussions

Austin’s Parks and Recreation Department has already faced pandemic-related delays over the past month in its efforts to gather feedback about the future of the 120-year old Hancock Golf Course. Meanwhile, a handful of vocal groups, some just weeks old,…

Monday, November 9, 2020 by Daniel Salazar

Parks board wants bigger say on financial, budget issues

The Parks and Recreation Board is making a move to dive deeper into the financial and budgetary issues that affect the city’s parks department. At the board’s Oct. 27 meeting, Board Member Sarah Faust made a recommendation to modify the…

Friday, October 30, 2020 by Jo Clifton

Council OKs purchase of Wood Street parkland

After a lengthy discussion about the rules regulating acquisition of city parkland, Council voted 7-2-2 on Thursday to purchase 0.214 acres of downtown property at 702 Wood St. Council members Jimmy Flannigan and Pio Renteria voted no, and Council Member…

Monday, October 26, 2020 by Jackson Barton

Council postpones $1.1 million acquisition of Wood Street property for new parkland

A small grassy field just off Sixth Street would provide easier access to the Shoal Creek Trail and preserve a historically significant piece of downtown, but City Council members delayed action on the $1.1 million purchase to address concerns that…

Tuesday, September 29, 2020 by Jessi Devenyns

PARD contends with homeless encampments during pandemic with limited resources

With nearly 300 parks and 17,409 acres of property to oversee, Wes Bickham, an environmental coordinator with the Parks and Recreation Department, has a lot of ground to cover in his work finding alternative solutions for people experiencing homelessness who…

Friday, September 25, 2020 by Jessi Devenyns

Parks board pushes against long-term reservation program for parks

Every year when the weather warms up, the city’s parks and greenbelts fill up. This year, that trend has been amplified by the pandemic as Austinites flock to city parks, causing some of the most popular outdoor spaces to hit…

Thursday, September 3, 2020 by Savana Dunning

Municipal golf courses to phase out BYOB policy, negotiating concession vendor contracts

The Parks and Recreation Department announced it will be eliminating its bring-your-own-beer policy for municipally run golf courses, starting Oct. 1. PARD’s Golf ATX Division quietly updated its website and Twitter on Aug. 21 with a public notice informing golfers…

Wednesday, September 2, 2020 by Jo Clifton

Council won’t vote on Walter E. Long Park plan now

Despite the fact that the vision plan for the nearly 3,700-acre Walter E. Long Park has been in the works for years and has won approval from both the Parks and Recreation Board and the Environmental Commission, a majority of…

Tuesday, August 25, 2020 by Jo Clifton

Audit outlines challenges for Millennium Youth Complex

The Office of the City Auditor has found numerous problems at the Millennium Youth Entertainment Complex in East Austin, starting with the city’s failure to effectively manage and monitor its agreements with the Austin Rosewood Community Development Corporation. The duties…

Friday, August 21, 2020 by Chad Swiatecki

City to consider Walter Long park vision, while county moves ahead with expo center plans

City Council will consider and possibly adopt the vision plan for Walter E. Long Metro Park later this month, more than a year after the plan was recommended for adoption by the Parks and Recreation Board. A memo late last…

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