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Central Coast parks to see upgrades, renovations through state grant

Guadalupe's Central Park
Courtesy: City of Guadalupe
Guadalupe's Central Park

Nine parks across the Central Coast are getting some major improvements after being awarded funds from a state grant.

Four parks in Santa Barbara County, four in Monterey County and one in San Luis Obispo County will all get makeovers in the coming years with funds from California State Parks.

The City of Guadalupe received almost $5 million to renovate its Central Park.

Tom Brandeberry is the executive director for a nonprofit called Los Amigos de Guadalupe, which helped the city get the grant funding. He said the grant amount is expected to cover the entire cost of the renovation but is based on estimates.

“When it actually gets down to doing the work, obviously things with COVID and supply chain could cause some problems with pricing," Brandeberry said. "But it, theoretically, is supposed to cover everything.”

Brandeberry said the renovation plans include a new dog park, skatepark and climbing wall.

He said they also intend to include culturally relevant art in most of the features.

The organization spoke with the neighbors in the area about minimizing disturbance during and after construction. Brandeberry said getting community input for the park plans is something they’ve been focusing on.

“When we get to the skatepark, the engineer or the design team that’s going to do that will be doing that with the kids in Guadalupe. We want the skaters from Guadalupe to be part of the design process," Brandeberry said. "Some of these things slow the project down but we think it’s worth slowing the project down to have these elements of the community’s involvement.”

They also plan to add a children’s playground, half basketball court and game tables in addition to a new restroom building, lighting and landscaping throughout the park. He said the existing walking path will also be repaired.

Brandeberry said some trees will need to be removed to complete the park renovation but most will be moved to a new location. He said young trees will stay and they plan to replace the ones they take out.

“Our intent is, once we’ve finished or even as we’re finishing, where we can put additional trees in, we will be putting them in,” Brandeberry said.

Brandeberry said he expects that if everything goes as planned, Central Park will be ready for use by the summer of 2023.

Rachel Showalter first joined KCBX as an intern from Cal Poly in 2017. During her time in college, she anchored and reported for Mustang News at Cal Poly's radio station, KCPR. After graduating, she took her first job as a Producer at KSBY-TV. She returned to the KCBX team in October 2020, reporting daily for KCBX News until she moved to the Pacific Northwest in July of 2022. Rachel spends her off-days climbing rocks, cooking artichokes and fighting crosswords with friends.
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