Update from the LBA President on Playground Installation Progress (Includes Changes to Plan)

Fri, 03/22/2019 - 11:27 -- Sarah M. previously

From Janet Kerley, President, Lake Barcroft Board of Directors 

Please see Master Plan here.

On Tuesday, March 19, 2019, the LBA board faced the fact that the challenges created by water runoff and erosion on Beach 3 are so substantial that the mitigation required to overcome them makes the original site selected for the playground unworkable. 

As many of you will recall, an important part of the playground project was the opportunity it would give LBA to address this erosion as part of the site prep for the playground.  It has proven otherwise.  When the installation team (Board members George Waters, Maintenance Chair; Andrew Casolini, Dal Bo, engineer and master plan designer; Brian Allen, construction expert; Bill Lecos, VP of last year’s board; and Davis Grant, WID manager) began the work earlier this month, they encountered an unanticipated amount of water from the hill and unexpected ground water percolating up into the site from the extremely high water table.  

In fact, it is the opinion of Davis, Andrew and Brian that the only practical approach for addressing the runoff issue is to restore the original contour to the area and begin anew.  This step was done yesterday and will to allow time for the settling and drying needed before beach season opens.  The erosion mitigation steps, including a buried retaining wall and French drain, will begin in the fall, so as not to disrupt the beach season.  

Yesterday, the board unanimously approved an alternative location on Beach 3. (Directional references are oriented as if one is facing the water.)  The new site is on the right side of the beach where an old boat rack that faces the water is currently located.  The goal is to dismantle the old boat rack and rebuild replacement racks on the left side of the beach at the wood line, near the existing single boat rack.  Using George Waters’ “tri-level design” will increase the rack’s capacity and ease of use. The estimated cost is under $1,000 for materials for the boat rack construction and the work will be done by volunteers.  

The alternative location meets the primary objectives of the playground initiative and all the commitments made in the community meetings – except that it is not in the exact location of the old equipment.  Hence I asked the board to vote again to approve this new location.  

The site installation team will pursue engaging professional installation of the footers for the playground, as this critical step requires a degree of expertise that neither the WID nor our volunteer troupe possesses.  Once the footers and the supporting poles are in place, we may still try to engage volunteers for building the structure – under the supervision of a Kompan Playground’s installation manager.

  • The new location has some real advantages:
  • No major erosion mitigation should be required, resulting in a significant cost saving.
  • It is less visible from the street, adjoining houses and houses across the lake, as it is tucked in between the boat racks and the elevated WID area.   
  • It is closer to the main path and thus lowers the cost of constructing a path to ADA Standards.
  • The sand will extend from the beach to the playground equipment, making the beach area larger.

The proposed timeline for the installation is as follows: 

  • Build new boat racks (April 13th)
  • Relocate boats from old rack (April 20th)
  • Prepare new site (April 22nd to April 30th)
  • Install playground (May 1st to May 15th)  
  • Sand placement and finishing touches (May 16th to May 23rd). This provides two weekends for volunteer engagement if needed.
  • Ribbon-cutting event (May 25th)