Splash Pad at Bielenberg Gets Lukewarm Reception from Woodbury City Council

The council went over several aspects of the exterior of the planned field house and lobby during a workshop Wednesday night.

A splash pad was discussed as part of a comprehensive look at the exterior for the Bielenberg Sports Center expansion project during a Woodbury City Council workshop Wednesday night.

While most aspects of the work—the plaza, outdoor rink and playground for kids of all abilities—were received favorably, the council expressed some concerns about the water feature.

The splash pad plans, as detailed by Stantec landscape architect John Slack, call for two areas, one for toddlers and another for older children and adults. It would be located north of the Madison’s Place playground.

Councilwoman Julie Ohs has long advocated for the splash pad, saying Wednesday it would make the new facility “more accessible, more inclusive.”

“That’s exactly what I had in mind,” she said of the plans.

But Councilman Christopher Burns reiterated that he’s “not a fan” of having a splash pad—which would likely cost about $500,000—as part of the overall plans for the sports center’s expansion.

Burns said a “sprinkler in the backyard” might serve the same purpose.

Councilwoman Amy Scoggins, too, said she had her doubts.

“I’m not really sold on it,” she said, adding that experiences with her own children showed they tired of other splash pads quickly.

Mayor Mary Giuliani Stephens and Councilman Paul Rebholz, meanwhile, said they don’t have strong feelings either way on a splash pad, and the city is set to recall the Bielenberg Sports Center Expansion Task Force to gather feedback on it.

Slack, the landscape architect, said the splash pad would likely be a popular feature.

“I think you’re going to create a parking problem,” he said.

More Coverage

Woodbury Playground Would be State’s Largest for Kids of All Abilities

Outdoor Movies in Woodbury? Update on Pleasure Rink for Bielenberg Sports Center Expansion

‘The Front Door’ for the New Bielenberg Sports Center


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Jim McGurran February 22, 2013 at 07:04 PM
I'm all for the pool/waterpark, not a silly spash-pad. The waterpark would probably pay for itself with user fees. And if the revenue projections say it wouldn't be self-supporting, nix the outdoor ice rink and use those funds to pay for something fun to do outdoors in the summer. This entire Bielenberg icerink and fieldhouse expansion is all about wintertime. Let's create something fun to do in the summer that can keep Woodbury money in Woodbury.
Kris Janisch February 22, 2013 at 07:52 PM
I have to admit I've never been to a splash pad. I do like the water slides at Valley Fair though.
SomeGuy February 22, 2013 at 09:00 PM
It would be nice to have more destinations in Woodbury for all ages, a reason to stay in Woodbury beyond sleeping here. While that may include sports/athletics, it needs to be expanded beyond that demographic and I am encouraged that they are asking questions. Woodbury needs better destinations, restaurants/bars, events - reasons for people to hang around on the weekend (and let me add, spend locally).
relax March 01, 2013 at 07:48 PM
I'd like to think the difference between the splash pad and a "sprinkler in the back yard" is the ability of the splash pad to have community involvement. If it saves the community 500,000 dollars I'm all for having the community gather in Councilman Burn's back yard to run through his sprinkler. I issue that as a challenge to Burns to make his backyard a community gathering ground where a sprinkler will be available. Same rules will be enforced as at a public park. This is an option that would allow everyone to be happy.
SomeGuy March 01, 2013 at 08:03 PM
Relax: I greatly appreciate your post. We really do need to call out our leaders when they make ridiculous comments like that. I guess our expectations for our leaders have lowered to the level where we are longer surprised to hear such comments from one of them. If he has a good arguments against this idea, he should be able to confidently and thoughtfully present them on their merit without hyperbole or exaggeration. And saying he has doubts and welcomes more study is perfectly acceptable as well.


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