Planned renovations to DeMun Park, 810 DeMun Ave. in Clayton, are progressing and are expected to begin soon.
At the Nov. 13 meeting of the Clayton Board of Aldermen, Patty DeForrest, the city’s parks and recreation director, and Andy Franke of Planning Design Studio told the board that plans were expected to be completed within several days. Bids for the project are expected to go out in December, with work beginning in early 2019, with completion in May 2019.
Upgrades include new benches, at least one with built-in planters; new playground equipment at both the north and south ends of the park; and the construction of a new, one-room, accessible family restroom.
The play equipment on the south side of the park will include a slide which uses metal rollers with a PVC coating. Franke said the rollers won’t get dangerously hot like a traditional metal slide can in the summer.
The PVC coating will also provide a better experience for children with hearing loss who use cochlear implants. Using a plastic slide can sometimes cause a buildup of static electricity. A discharge of that electricity will not harm the child, but can interfere with the implants. Franke said that the City Museum in downtown St. Louis has roller slides.
The city has budgeted $475,000 for the project. As of mid-November, about $50,000 for the project had been collected in donations given to the Clayton Century Foundation, which raises funds for city projects.
DeForrest said donations were made by various individuals and groups including Kaldi’s Coffee and the Taylor Family of Enterprise Holdings, which is based in Clayton. Kaldi’s also has several Clayton locations, including one on DeMun across from the park.
DeForrest said this is the first project for which the Clayton Century Foundation used Facebook as a source for donations.
The renovation design and planning process included meetings with the city’s parks and recreation commission and multiple meetings with residents in the DeMun neighborhood.