The city of Richardson is in the planning stages for park improvements at three neighborhood playgrounds.

Two of these park projects include renovating neighborhood playgrounds at Mark Twain Park and Woodhaven Grove Park. The third project will see the city replace one of Breckinridge Park's two playgrounds.

According to a filing with the Texas Department of Licensing and Regulation, both park renovation projects are expected to cost $300,000. The construction project includes replacement of old playground equipment and upgrades to adjacent walkways and ramps.

Funding for the renovations of these parks will be provided by the 2021 bond program. Approved by 74.69% of voters, Proposition E of the 2021 program supplied $3 million for renovating nine neighborhood parks, including the improvements at the Mark Twain and Woodhaven Grove parks.

“We typically like to renovate our neighborhood parks every 15-20 years, improving the places that get the most attention with new equipment,” Superintendent of Park Planning Kurt Beilharz said.

Beilharz said both park renovations are expected to start in early July with an estimated completion in early October. According to Beilharz, the city’s parks and recreation department planned to begin the renovations sooner, but work was delayed due to hold ups from the playground manufacturers.

A final construction report is expected to go before Richardson City Council during its June 13 meeting.

The Breckinridge Park playground to be replaced is referred to as the Lakes Playground because of its proximity to the park’s northwest lakes. It has been deemed too expensive to simply renovate.

“That playground was put in before the accessibility laws were applied,” Beilharz said. “If we provided renovations, we would be required to add an accessibility route from the parking lot down all the way to the playground.”

The plan is for the city to move the playground to the open space next to the park’s Keffler Ball Fields.

Designs are being planned for the new playground, with council expected to hear a proposal for the project in 2023. Beilharz said he hopes for construction to begin in the spring of 2024, with the project expected to last around six months.

Including parks under construction, Richardson has 978 acres of parkland across 39 locations, according to its website.