North County Outlook - Community newspaper serving Marysville, Arlington, Tulalip, Smokey Point, Lakewood

Haller Park improvements include new restrooms

 


Haller Park’s new restrooms are currently being installed and Arlington officials expect that they will be open in the next few weeks.

The new bathrooms will replace the old unit which was built in the ‘60s and suffered “under the influence of flood water,” said Marc Hayes, director of community and economic development at the city of Arlington.

“It was just getting old and it needed to be replaced,” he said. “It was an old concrete block building and the grout joints were beginning to fail.”

Because the old bathrooms were lower and closer to the Stillaguamish River, they frequently received damage when the river would crest during flood times.

“Floods deteriorated the building,” said Hayes, and river sediment would get into the building.

“They were unusable during flood times as well, obviously,” he said.

The old bathrooms were also not compliant with the Americans with Disabilities Act [ADA].

“The ADA wasn’t even in existence when it was built,” said Hayes. “They have been retrofitted over the years to get them more ADA compliant, but they still weren’t [compliant] really,” he said.

The city of Arlington has budgeted around $280,000 to build the new bathroom at Haller Park, which will be built on higher ground outside of flood areas, be ADA compliant and have “family-style compartments” said Hayes.

“The new restrooms will be a much better product,” he said.

The funding for the project comes mostly from the federal Community Development Block Grant, which is providing $197,000 in funding.

The city of Arlington and Snohomish County are providing matching funds for the rest of the budget, said Hayes.

City officials hope to have the new bathrooms open in the next few weeks.

The sidewalks and some landscaping around the building still have to be completed before the facility opens though, said Hayes.

Completion of those projects depends on how much the weather cooperates as well, said Hayes. “It has been a wet couple of weeks and we need it dry before we set down the sidewalks,” he said.

Once the new bathrooms are in place and open, the old bathrooms will be scheduled to be demolished, said Hayes.

Arlington’s Haller Park has seen a number of projects over the last few years including new playground equipment and a new boat launch.

After the new bathrooms are installed, the next major improvement will likely be a splash pad, said Hayes. The Arlington Rotary Club is driving the project and has raised $660,000 to help install the splash pad.

“I’m sure you’ll see more traffic in the area,” said Hayes who added the city put in additional parking last year.

“We’ve been trying to get more efficient with our parking spaces out in the gravel area as well,” he said.

The city is also looking at a couple of smaller projects, like walkways, that could be worked this year and is meeting with local groups like the Girl Scouts and Rotary Club to formulate some service projects for the park, said Hayes.

 

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