Patience needed for park remodel

The public’s patience is wearing thin.

For nearly a month now, bulldozers and water trucks have rumbled across the nearly treeless moonscape once known as the Downtown Plaza Park. With the elimination at the park of the 21 tall elms, the bushes and smaller woody vegetation, the grass, the gazebo, the multi-colored sidewalk, the benches and the huge boulder bearing a plaque of historic significance, the feel of the entire downtown has changed.

Conjuring up a vision of the future park, even with the artist renderings hanging on the cyclone fence that surrounds the acreage, takes a pretty good imagination at this point. The construction has removed dozens of parking spots from the very heart of the downtown at a time when school is back and students are competing for the limited number of spaces. Who came up with that timeline?

While we pass the park and remember it for the magnificent spot it once was, we should remain patient and trust the city and those who’ve designed the remodel. Still, we wonder how they are going to fit all those projects—water fountain, chessboard tables, artist offerings, new bandstand, new trees and a veterans’ memorial—onto that plot of land and still have room for park visitors. We can’t wait to see.