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posted September 27, 2004

Working with the Park's Maintenance People, Fall 2004

A day (or two) in the life of maintenance negotiations

Here's a snapshot of the kind of thing that's involved in keeping the park in good shape. The Friends of Dufferin Grove Park interacted with the Parks Maintenance Manager over a period of a few days in September, and we recorded the results. Items that were still incomplete after the intervention are shaded in pink.

Item

Status, Monday September 20

Reply/ timetable from Parks and Rec manager, Tuesday Sept.21

Status on manager's timetable, Friday Sept.24

1. the wood chips need to be spread over the mud area near the playground

DONE by Friends of Dufferin Grove Park.

2a. the playground fence by the rain shelter needs to fixed (damaged for at least two months)

DONE by Parks crew

2b. the fence by the sand pit needs to be stabilized so it doesn't fall over when a kid climbs on it (mentioned in April)

NOT DONE

TOMORROW

Done on Wednesday

3. The new boards on the rain shelter bench need to be painted

DONE by Parks

4. the playground sand needs tilling again, it's very hard again because of constant use, and a kid fell off the monkey bars and broke his arm today, even though the fall was not from a very great height

NOT DONE, SURFACE STILL VERY HARD AND NON-COMPLIANT

TOMORROW

One-third of the high-fall areas were rototilled two days later, then the machine was removed

5. the small playground sandbox needs filling (this was first mentioned in April, it appears never to have been done except for some wheelbarrow-loads put in by rec staff)

DONE by Parks staff including supervisor and foreperson

6. the new fence needs to be put in by the new garden area (not done since April, the temporay barriers are an eyesore)

MOST OF THE POSTS ARE IN, OTHERWISE UNFINISHED

TOMORROW

On the "tomorrow' day (Wednesday) the park maintenance crew had a picnic in the afternoon instead, to give a send-off to the staff going on lay-off. So the fence only got about one hour of work. Only one additional post was put in (no gateposts) and the wire was stapled up. However because the top pieces of the fence need to go on before the wire gets put on, the wire will have to be removed again. After the staff picnic there was no more time, I guess, and not in the rest of the week either. Amazing, how long such a project can be drawn out, with confident assurances over and over that tomorrow is the day, or tomorrow, or tomorrow, or........

7. the park's dirt thoroughfares need to be re-graded (various sections of erosion again; this grading was only done once this season)

NOT DONE

REGRADED TWO WEEKS AGO-WILL BE COMPLETED PRIOR TO WINTER

The dirt path through the park evidently did have some work done on it and the erosion is not as bad as I thought

8. the picnic tables need to have their bolts tightened and some need shims; community volunteers painted 13 tables (some so worn there was no paint left at all on parts of them), three benches, and 2 chairs last Saturday but the wobbly tables still need attention

BOLTS STILL NOT TIGHTENED, SHIMS STILL NOT IN.

There is a 2-4 MONTH TURNAROUND if completed through our tech services shop

So if we don't want to lose the tables for 2-4 months just to get the bolts tightened, we'll have to do it ourselves.

9. the four piper benches that were borrowed from the park by Parks staff need to be returned after a two-month absence -- despite our many locker-room discard benches, there are still not enough benches for park users to sit on.

TWO OTHER BENCHES WERE BROUGHT BUT FOUR BENCHES STILL MISSING

STOLEN FROM OTHER PARKS-REPLACEMENT BENCHES HAVE BEEN ADDED

we will not get those benches back.

10 . the compacted high-use areas need wood chips or leaf compost in the fall, especially around the playground and by the ovens

NOT DONE YET

NOT RECOMMENDED at this time

11. the rink cracks need a plan

NOT DONE YET

An issue that just keeps on going and going and going.....

12. the field house washrooms need more attention and more toilet paper, especially since there are many events scheduled for September/October

MUCH BETTER

During the pow wow there was enough toilet paper for the first time in 5 years of the pow wow.

AND PLEASE CONFIRM IF I HEARD YOU RIGHT -- ONE STAFF IS OFF AT JURY DUTY, ONE STAFF IS ON REHAB, TWO STAFF ARE ALREADY RE-ASSIGNED TO WINTER TASKS. DOES THAT LEAVE ONLY FOUR STAFF FOR YOUR WHOLE AREA?

That's right.

WE ALSO NEED TO HAVE THE SAND PLOWED BACK INTO THE SAND PIT ONE MORE TIME BEFORE WINTER -- IT WAS INTENSIVELY USED AND THEREFORE IT NEEDS REGULAR MAINTENANCE

WE WILL DO THIS A THIRD TIME LATE SEPTEMBER

FOR FUTURE REFERENCE: PLAYGROUND MAINTENANCE REQUIRED IN MAY, JULY, SEPTEMBER, I.E. THREE TIMES A YEAR

I agree and we'll make this a priority at all parks for next year


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