The California Park & Recreation Society honored the City of Carlsbad with an Excellence in Design award for Alga Norte Community Park, the city’s newest park, which opened in December 2013. The 32-acre park includes an aquatic center, ball fields, basketball courts, skate and dog parks, playgrounds and open spaces.
The society presented the award — in the park planning category for projects over $3 million — to City of Carlsbad Parks & Recreation staff at a conference in Sacramento on March 13.
City of Carlsbad Park Development Manager Liz Ketabian said the award is special because it represents recognition by the city’s peers in park development.
“This recognition is a cherry on top of the real reward, which is seeing people enjoy the park every single day,” said Ketabian. “Designing and building Alga Norte was a real team effort, and nothing makes all of us in the City of Carlsbad Parks & Recreation Department happier than to see the park filled up with families having a wonderful time.”
The city broke ground on Alga Norte Community Park, located at Poinsettia Lane and Alicante Road in southeastern Carlsbad, in June 2012 after many years of planning.
City of Carlsbad Parks & Recreation Department Director Chris Hazeltine said that Alga Norte was the product of a collaborative effort involving community members, city officials and industry experts.
“Alga Norte Community Park is a credit to the community and city leaders, who never shrank from the vision of creating a world-class park to serve Carlsbad residents today and for many years into the future,” Hazeltine said. “We are appreciative that the California Park & Recreation Society has chosen to recognize our collective efforts.”
The California Park & Recreation Society has 3,300 members representing 535 local parks and recreation agencies throughout the state.
“These agencies represent the finest in initiatives addressing community issues, recreation programming, park planning, facility design, and marketing and communications in California,” said California Park & Recreation Executive Director Stephanie Stephens.
Alga Norte Community Park includes:
A 56-meter Olympic sized competition pool with viewing bleachers.
A 25-yard, 12-lane swim instructional pool.
A 10-by-25-foot warm water therapy spa for adults.
A 22-foot diameter 6-inch deep kids pool.
A “splash pad” play area for children.
Three lighted multipurpose ball fields with a concession stand.
One lighted full basketball court and one half court.
A lighted skate park for beginner and experienced skateboarders.
An off-leash dog park divided into areas for larger and smaller dogs, including obstacle course-type play equipment.
Shaded playground with 100 percent universally accessible play equipment.
Shaded picnic areas with barbeques.
The park was designed to include numerous “green” features and incorporate energy-saving elements aimed at making the park both environmentally and economically sustainable. To continue this effort, the city recently installed solar photovoltaic panels in Alga Norte’s parking lot that will generate energy for most of the park’s electrical needs and reduce greenhouse gases for many years to come.
Alga Norte was also honored by the San Diego/Imperial Chapter of American Public Works Associations as a 2014 Project of the Year last May.