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Within our “Quilt of Neighborhoods,” Cherry Hill’s parks and playgrounds often serve as the seams where families gather for entertainment and activities. Cherry Hill is unique in that we are home to fifty-two Township parks and three County facilities. Our parks and recreation facilities, which include walking paths, hiking trails, athletic fields, playground equipment, and lakes are extremely well utilized and enjoyed by our residents.
Many of our parks and recreation facilities are true jewels of the community, which is why we need a long term strategy for improvements and maintenance of these facilities. My administration has taken advantage of this unusually mild winter to complete a full inventory and evaluation of our Township Parks and facilities, to identify areas of need, and to create a strategy for performing necessary maintenance. We are in the process of developing a three year plan, beginning with the creation of a full inventory and improvement program for our parks system. We are utilizing these winter and early spring months to create that program, so that we can then develop a schedule to complete the needed improvements.
The Mayor’s office, Department of Public Works, and Department of Recreation are working collaboratively to generate the Parks inventory through site visits currently being made to each individual Township park by members of the collaborative team. During these site visits, every aspect of the site is closely inspected, evaluated, and logged into a database. The database will then include a full inventory of all aspects of the park, from the type of equipment at the facility, to the posted signage, to checking the condition of equipment and recreation facilities, and any other issues or aspects that need to be addressed.
Individual site visits and identification will then lead to recommendations for specific areas in need of attention and maintenance. From those recommendations, the appropriate action will be taken to make the necessary improvements.
With the clock already ticking to complete a full parks inventory, I would like to encourage community input and communication regarding parks that are in need of upgrading and maintenance. As an administration, we encourage community and residential input through various multi-media avenues including social media, the Township website, email, US mail service, phoning the Mayor’s office, or visiting Town Hall for a face-to-face conversation.
As we prepare for the launch of the Mayor’s Wellness Campaign, it is my commitment to ensure safe and accessible municipal facilities so that the community can continue participating in recreational activities and experience the enjoyment of our Township’s parks and facilities. I look forward to the warm weather and exciting community events quickly approaching and I encourage all of you to utilize and enjoy all that Cherry Hill has to offer.