City of King | December 8, 2021
The City is excited to announce it has received approval from the State of California for its Proposition 68 grant application for $2.135 million to construct its proposed Downtown Park/Plaza Project. In response to the notification, Mayor LeBarre stated: “King City greatly appreciates the Governor’s commitment to rural communities, the California Department of Parks and Recreation recognizing the value of our project, and most importantly I want to thank our community for their help and input in making this project a beautiful addition to our city.” The project was identified as a need through public workshops designed to plan improvements to the downtown area as part of the City’s economic development efforts. The project features were then developed through a series of public workshops, meetings and activities. Community input was a major criteria in the application review process, so the City is appreciative of the community’s participation to both create an excellent project design and assist in obtaining approval for the funding.
Proposition 68 was a State of California general obligation bond passed by the voters in 2018. The grant was awarded through the Statewide Park Development and Community Revitalization Grant Program, designed to increase access to parks and open space facilities. According to the California Department of Parks and Recreation, “it was a very competitve process.” Of the 468 applications requesting $2.42 billion, 112 grants were awarded for a total of $548.3 million.
The Downtown Park/Plaza project will be constructed in the heart of downtown at the blighted vacant property on the northeast corner of Broadway Street and Vanderhurst Avenue. It is one of the key features of the King City Downtown Streetscape Master Plan developed in 2017. It will feature grass and brick open space areas, outdoor seating and tables, a stage area, trees and landscaping, interactive youth art features, a mural and sculpture, a public restroom and parking improvements. It is intended to help revitalize the downtown area and provide a place for the public to eat, play, enjoy events, and relax while visiting the downtown. The existing historical building at 110 Vanderhurst Avenue will also be renovated and converted to a new Visitor and History Center as a separate but related project.
The property was acquired using park development impact fee revenue and construction will be fully funded from the Proposition 68 grant. Therefore, no City General Fund revenues will be impacted. The project is being designed by RRM Design Group. Construction is projected to begin in spring 2022 and be completed in fall 2022.