In spring 2014, Cottageville Park in Hopkins, Minnesota, was showing its age. The playground equipment was outdated, the turf was thin and weedy, and the park’s lone basketball hoop had seen its better days.
Faced with the challenge of improving the environment in the park and its surrounding area, the Minnehaha Creek Watershed District (MCWD) entered into a partnership with the City of Hopkins, the Blake Road Collaborative, and Minnesota’s Clean Water, Land & Legacy Fund to expand and redevelop the park.
Through a cooperative agreement between Hopkins and MCWD, both partners outlined social, economic, and environmental goals for a previously hidden, one-acre park which was once the highest crime response location in the City. Working together, nearly five acres of parkland, which now connects to a restored streambank of Minnehaha Creek, provides much needed greenspace in a heavily urbanized area of Hopkins. The park incorporates over twenty-five acres of regional stormwater treatment under new greenspace which will off-set regulatory requirements for a planned affordable housing project. The project creates a 20,000 ft3 underground iron enhanced sand filtration system which maximizes park real estate and treats 30 acres of watershed previously untreated. Wenck also provided creek buffer restoration, creek access, educational signage, a community garden, walking paths, and playgrounds. Cottageville Park improves quality of life for all residents by not only being environmentally resilient, but also by being a communal place for everyday recreation that all can be proud of.
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