Legacy Grove is lively in Winchester
BY REVEREND JERRY JOHNS
Legacy Grove Park is designed to be an iconic green space in the heart of Winchester, Kentucky. The park contains a 2-acre, inclusive, adventure playground with a unique shade “sculpture” and exploration creek. Legacy Grove is also home to Winchester’s only dog park, and a paved, fully accessible 1-mile walking track that encircles much of the perimeter of the park.
The process of bringing the park from an ambitious idea to a reality is as important as the amenities available in the park.
“Beginning in 2012, more than 200 community members and a Youth Design Team gave their input on how they thought the land where the former Clark Regional Medical Center stood should be used. Community voices were clear in calling for an innovative public park. The park was dubbed “Project 1107” for its address at 1107 W. Lexington Ave.
Public roundtable participants and the Project 1107 Committee created the following guiding principles:
- Mentally and Physically Inspiring
- Geared Toward Family and Individual Activities
- Incorporates Public Art
- Incorporates Environmentally Friendly Infrastructure
- Must Add Cultural and Economic Value to the Community
Using these principles, community members discussed and made recommendations about what they wanted to see in the park. Local experts were brought in to begin creating a design concept. They included landscape architect Bill Esarey, architect and designer Melody Farris Jackson, and landscape architecture professor Ned Crankshaw.
In 2014, Fred Kent, founder of the Project for Public Spaces (PPS), came to Winchester to speak with community members about creating the new park, including how it will be used and what will be most valuable to the community. Regional firms CARMAN and Dean Builds were selected to design and construct Legacy Grove. In addition, Learning Landscapes Design, a firm nationally known for its forward-thinking play-area designs, was hired to work with the Youth Design Team to create the two-acre play area.
Construction began in Spring 2018 and was completed in 2019. The park was named Legacy Grove. With the park build complete, the non-profit organization Legacy Greenscapes was created to manage and maintain Legacy Grove.”
Legacy Grove Park was conceived and built to unite communities in Winchester and to provide a greenspace that is welcoming to all persons. It is more than just a park. It is a step toward building a more equitable and resilient Winchester.
This article also appears on page 6 of the March 2021 print edition of Hamburg Journal.
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