Park Board Minutes

September 17, 2007

A regular meeting of the Hopkins Park Board was held on September 17, 2007.

  1. Call To Order
    The meeting was called to order by Park Board Chairperson Doug Datta at 7:45 pm.
  2. Roll Call
    Present were Park Board members:  Ron Helgeson, Molly Cummings, Sharon Paulson, Aaron Kuznia and Doug Datta.  Also present was Hopkins staff liaison Steve Stadler.
  3. Approval of Minutes
    Molly Cummings moved and Sharon Paulson seconded a motion to approve the minutes for the July 21, 2007 meeting.  On the vote, the minutes were approved 5-0.
  4. Business
    1. Results of Park system tour
      Prior to the Park Board Meeting the entire Park Board and Staff Liaison Steve Stadler toured all city parks with the exception of Shady Oak Beach.  The general consensus of the Board was that the parks are in good shape.
    2. Neighborhood Park Improvement Planning
      Steve Stadler presented the survey results for Valley Park, Park Valley Playground, Oakes Park and Burnes Park.  Molly Cummings compiled the results for Oakes and Burnes Parks.  The predominant responses to the question "The number one way this park can be improved?" for these parks were as follows: 
        -Oakes Park:  Need a bathroom available and play equipment upgrades
        -Burnes Park:  Clean up and resurface tennis courts, allow dogs on leash and security/safety concerns
       - Valley Park:  Improve security/safety of park, allow dogs on leash, upgrade park equipment, daily maintenance
        -Park Valley Playground:  Upgrade play equipment
      The Park Board members agreed that they should consider the issue of dogs in the parks and if a change is needed regarding the current regulations banning dogs in the parks.  Possibilities include allowing dogs on leashes, leashed dogs on trails only, an off-leash dog park or allowing leashed dogs at select parks.  There was a questions about the status of lighting in the parks - Steve Stadler will report back on this.  The Board agreed that portable bathrooms should be provided at Oakes Park and, perhaps, extended beyond the Labor Day holiday at Valley Park.  The Board generally agreed that feedback on the survey results could be adequately provided in a Hopkins Highlights article with reference to specific park results on the web site.
          After the discussion, Steve Stadler stated that for the next meeting (November 19) he would bring recommendations regarding feedback to the neighborhoods and improvements that can be considered based upon the survey results.  The Park Board agreed to continue this item for the next meeting.   Summaries of the responses from all nine parks surveyed are attached to these minutes.           
    3. Report on Shady Oak Beach Operations Committee
      The Park Board supported the recommendations of this committee regarding beach fees at their May 2007 meeting.  Doug Datta reported that the Committee decided to go with the fees as proposed in May 2007, i.e., $12/use season pass fee plus an additional $10 transaction fee if purchased at the beach.  Final approval of the new fees will be through Hopkins and Minnetonka City Councils.  
    4. LRT Regional Trail Winter Activities Permit
      The Park Board approved the winter trail activity permit with Three Rivers Park District. Aaron Kuznia moved, Sharon Paulson seconded the motion to approve the permit, on the vote the motion carried 5-0.
    5. Park Area Assignments Reports
      • Aaron Kuznia:  Maetzold Field, Interlachen Park and Shady Oak Beach - nothing to report
      • Sharon Paulson:  Hilltop, Buffer and Burnes Parks - nothing to report
      • Ron Helgeson:  Valley Park, Central Park, Oakes Park - Ron Helgeson mentioned that the Oakes picnic shelter drip edge needed repair and the restroom/warming house door needed replacement.
      • Molly Cummings:  Cottageville Park, Harley Hopkins Park, Elmo Park - nothing to report
      • Doug Datta:  Park Valley Playground, Shady Oak Nature Area, Downtown Park, Hiawatha Oaks natural area - nothing to report  
  5. New Business Items
    1. Aaron Kuznia mentioned that the Park Board vice-chair position remained open.  After brief discussion, Aaron Kuznia nominated Sharon Paulson and Ron Helgeson seconded.  On the vote, the nomination to appoint Sharon Paulson as Park Board Vice-Chairperson was approved 5-0. 
    2. Review of the 2007-2008 Park Board Strategic Plan Action Items
      Steve Stadler reviewed the plan and briefly explained actions that have been completed, what is underway and which actions are not yet underway.
    3. Staff update on various items of interest, as follows:
      • 2007 Livable Communities Grant:  The city's application for grant funds to expand Cottageville Park was not approved.  The city intends to reapply next year. 
      • City Lease of School District property adjacent to Central Park:  This lease agreement is being re-worked as the original signed agreement did not get approved through the School Board.  Potential concern of the School District's is committing to a long term lease agreement in the event they choose to sell the old Katherine Curren school property.  The city has a planned 2008 capital project to rehab the tennis courts which are within this lease area. 
      • Nine Mile Creek Bank Stabilization project:  Upcoming meeting with the Nine Mile Creek Watershed District Board of Managers and Hopkins City Council. 
      • Hopkins Youth Hockey Association proposal for covered ice hockey rink on north side of Hopkins Pavilion:  The HYHA Board is no longer interested in pursuing this project. 
      • Comprehensive Plan Update:  Plan to have a draft Parks, Trails and Open Spaces section update for Park Board review/comment/approval for the November 2007 or January 2008 meeting.
  6. Next Scheduled Meeting
    1. November 19, 2007, 7:30 pm
  7. Adjournment
    Sharon Paulson moved and Ron Helgeson seconded a motion to adjourn.  The motion carried on a 5-0 vote. The meeting adjourned at 9:15 pm.