Living in Santa Clarita provides residents with a wide range of benefits that you just don’t see in other communities. One such amenity is the city of Santa Clarita’s robust parks system, which includes 35 beautiful parks spaced throughout our various neighborhoods. With ample room to run, play sports and relax with our families, Santa Clarita’s parks are ideal for letting go of daily stress and doing the things we love.
As someone who grew up in Santa Clarita, I have fond memories of being outdoors with my friends. Whether we were riding our bikes, playing football or just out exploring, there was always somewhere safe we could go to have fun. Over the years with my own children, it has been a joy to visit the various parks in the city and explore the uniqueness of each one.
Central Park – located on Bouquet Canyon Road in Saugus – has been the home of many community events since it was built. From the city’s annual Concerts in the Park series to adult sports softball games to the inaugural Unity Walk on Martin Luther King Jr. Day that was recently held, Central Park is a place where residents from throughout the city come together for recreation, relaxation and enrichment.
This past December, the city embarked upon a major capital improvement project that will enhance Central Park and bring new opportunities for all who visit the crown jewel of our park system. Identified as one of the many action items in the city’s five-year strategic plan, SC2025, the buildout of Central Park will result in a significant expansion to Santa Clarita’s largest park.
Central Park is already a hub of activity – and not just for sports enthusiasts. In addition to four softball fields and 10 multipurpose fields, the park is also home to a beautiful and thriving community garden, one of Santa Clarita’s three dog parks, walking and hiking trails and much more.
The buildout project is taking place primarily in the undeveloped southwestern portion of the park. Over the next several months, that area will be transformed with improvements that all park visitors will enjoy.
The project consists of the addition of four full-sized multipurpose fields, as well as sports field lighting, landscaping and irrigation to support the development. Crews will also construct a new restroom building and an exercise staircase, and upgrade the Central Bark dog park, including a lighted accessible walkway connected to the brand-new, 286-space parking lot.
If you’ve been to Central Park recently, then you’ve seen that the beginning stages of construction are now underway. Construction officially started on Jan. 10, and crews have been working to clear the site of all vegetation in preparation for the grading phase. After grading is finished, the focus will shift toward creating the various elements of the project, with the final product anticipated to open to the public this fall.
Once the entire buildout is complete, the enhancements will result in even more opportunities for recreation, exercise and community events at Central Park. More space will be available for local sports teams to hold their practices, ultimate Frisbee players to get a game in and parents to teach their kids how to kick a soccer ball and fly a kite. Of course, the Central Park Trail and cross-country course will still be available for walking, hiking and running.
I also look forward to the many special events that will take place at the park going forward. In addition to sports competitions on the new fields, the added space will be great for expanded concerts and festivals in the future.
As construction at Central Park continues, the city will provide updates on the progress through posts on social media. Be sure to connect with the city on Facebook and Instagram to follow along.
I can’t wait to see you all at the official ribbon cutting this fall!
Councilman Cameron Smyth is a member of the Santa Clarita City Council and can be reached at [email protected].