Beaverdale Park Master Plan

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515-248-6355 afgraves@dmgov.org 3333 Adams Avenue, Des Moines, IA 50310
The development of the Beaverdale Park Master Plan Concept has been a community and focus group-driven effort to renovate the existing 24.8-acre park in the heart of Beaverdale. To develop the master plan concept, the Parks and Recreation Planning Division focused on public input/community engagement and a thorough analysis of the park's existing conditions.


Public  Input and Community Engagement
The planning division focused a lot of attention on public input during the master planning process as the role of public input is crucial to develop a master plan that best suits the surrounding residents, the community, and all park visitors. The Parks and Recreation Project Manager attended (8) eight Beaverdale Neighborhood Association meetings, developed (2) two online questionnaires, (2) homeowner meetings, presented at (1) one block party, and communicated with the focus group.  

These public input opportunities allowed the planning division to discuss the results and responses of the online questionnaire, receive direct input and answer questions, review the analysis work, present the concepts and vision of the master plan, and receive approval of the direction of the master plan concept.     

BNA presentation                       Block Party Presentation


Master
Plan Concept Development
The information below outlines the Planning Division's process work to develop the Beaverdale Park Master Plan Concept.   

Phase 1: Online Questionnaire
In order to gain as much public input as possible the planning division developed an online questionnaire in the Fall of 2020.  The online questionnaire garnered a total of 636 responses, which is one of the most significant totals the Parks and Recreation Department has received for an online questionnaire. The Beaverdale community and residents provided input on existing uses, benefits of current conditions and areas of improvement, amenities to include and omit, preferences on design styles and materials, circulation within the park and connection to community, and parking needs.   

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Beaverdale Master Plan Development_Questionnaire Results Thumbnail_Page_01   Click HERE to view the Beaverdale Master Plan Development Questionnaire Results Packet


Phase 2: Existing Park Conditions Analysis
The existing conditions were analyzed through GIS (Geographic Information System) and onsite inspection/inventory. The planning division inventoried the park’s soil conditions, slope and contours, plant community, visibility within and around the park, traffic analysis, amenities within the park and the surrounding parks, and the connection to the Beaverdale community.  

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Beaverdale Master Plan Development_Existing Conditions Analysis_Page_01     Click HERE to view the Beaverdale Master Plan Development Existing Conditions Analysis Packet

Phase 3: Master Plan Concept Development
After compiling all analysis work, tallying the first questionnaire responses, and meeting with the BNA the planning division developed a master plan concept for the 24.8-acre park area. The proposed concept includes these potential improvements: 20 acres of woodland restoration, Remove invasive species, Open canopy to increase sunlight for ground plain, Native seeding, Increase visibility throughout the park for safety, Waterway and stormwater management, Bank armoring with nature stone, Stone weir walls to reduce the speed of runoff, Renovate parking orientation and entrance into the park, Paved walkways and woodland trails, Shelter(s) enclosed and open-air, Picnic and Barbeque areas, Outdoor Classroom Space, Fitness Areas and Equipment, Slackline and Hammock Areas, Park Entrance Nodes (signage and trail connections), Destination Areas, Overlook, seating, art opportunity, signage (historical and nature), and viewing areas, and Playground Areas (2 - 5-year-old and  5 - 12-year-old)

Beaverdale Master Plan Concept

Beaverdale Master Plan Development_Concept packet Thumbnail_Page_01     Click HERE to view the Beaverdale Master Plan Development Concept Draft Packet

Phase 4: Final Concept Presentation and Community Input

Based upon the input received during concept development, the final Master Plan Concept was presented to the Beaverdale Neighborhood Association during the quarterly meeting on February 8th, 2022.  Below is the concept packet that was presented to the BNA    

Beaverdale Master Plan_Concept Presentation 2-8-22_Page_01    Click HERE to view the Beaverdale Master Plan Concept Presentation Packet

To ensure that the master plan concept that we developed was exactly what the community wanted, the Planning Division developed a second questionnaire. This created an additional opportunity for public input for those who couldn't attend the quarterly meeting presentation. The online questionnaire was open for participation from February 8th - February 21st. The questionnaire allowed the community to provided input on previous questionnaire participation, project website usage, approval of master plan concept, improvement priorities, areas of expansion, amenity style direction, and additional comments.

The online questionnaire was promoted in sidewalk publication, on all social media channels (City of DSM and Beaverdale Neighborhood Association),  printed flyers delivered to local businesses in Beaverdale town center, and emailed to the surrounding neighborhood association presidents.

Phase 5: Master Plan Concept Approval 

We received an overwhelming majority of approval for the Beaverdale Master Plan Concept from those who participated in the second online questionnaire. The questionnaire results were shared with the Beaverdale Neighborhood Association and the focus group. During the March 3rd Beaverdale Neighborhood Association meeting, the board voted and approved the Master Plan Concept.    

After receiving approval from the Beaverdale Neighborhood Association Board, online questionnaire participants, and the community focus group, the Planning Division presented the project to the City of DSM Parks and Recreation Board on March 22nd, 2022. The Planning Division's Project Manager presented all of the project development work, public input opportunities, results of questionnaires, and the final concept.  Two members of the community focus group (Matt Connolly and Christian Sweeney), former City Council Member (Bill Gray), and Beaverdale Neighborhood Association President (Marcus Coenen) spoke during the presentation to show their support and approval of the Beaverdale Master Plan. 

The City of Des Moines Parks and Recreation Board voted and approved the Beaverdale Park Master Plan during the April 26th, 2022 meeting. 

Beaverdale Park Master Plan:  Next Steps

Woodland Restoration and Stormwater Management 
To jump-start this master planning project, the Parks and Recreation Planning Division applied for an Iowa Department of Natural Resources REAP Grant. The application encompassed the much-needed restoration work for the 20 acres of woodland and stormwater management within Beaverdale Park. In December of 2021 the Parks and Rec Department was notified that their submission would be awarded the grant funding for the project. However, the grant agreement between the Iowa DNR and City will need to be approved by Council before receiving the funding and restoration work commencing. Parks and Recreation are hopeful that restoration work will begin in fall of 2022. This restoration work will create a perfect starting point for the potential park improvements.  

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Beaverdale Park_Existing Project Area_Page_01    Click HERE to view the Beaverdale Master Plan Development Woodland Restoration Concept Packet

Estimated Project Timeline
Information outline in the timeline below is an estimation. It is subject funding, project workload, and city council approval

Spring 2022

Removal of vacated restroom building

Assessment of existing open-air shelter

Summer 2022
Inventory of Trees

Phasing and Budgeting
Fundraising Opportunity

Fall 2022
Woodland Restoration and stormwater management

Design Development

Phase 1 Construction
TBD (subject to funding)