Riverbank Police Services Chief Ed Ridenour and Riverbank City Councilmember Luis Uribe, who represents District 1, hosted a Community BBQ at Castleberg Park this past Saturday. There were several residents in attendance that were informed of upcoming upgrades to the park and an addition of cameras.
“The public was happy to hear about the upgrades and safety measures,” said Ridenour. “I believe the upgrades will increase the use of the park and the safety for our residents.”
The BBQ began at 11 a.m. on Saturday, Aug. 21 and ended at 1 p.m. There were over 150 meals distributed that included chips and a hot dog. Central Valley Community Resources had a table set up where they served up shaved ice. There was no cost to the public.
Uribe remarked that meals that were left over were distributed to the homeless community and an organization that helps those in need.
For several years there has been a problem with graffiti inside the bathrooms at Castleberg. Due to this issue the Chief has suggested installing security cameras near the park to deter vandalism and keep the community safe. This was well received by the attendees, Uribe noted.
“Per capita funding has been already allocated to redo the basketball courts and new benches,” stated Uribe. “We are also in the process of securing a CDBG (Community Development Block Grant) grant to tear out the old trail and redo it completely and expanding it to five feet. ADA accessibility is very important to the council and I noticed there were no ADA ramps on the west side of the park when I was walking the park with my daughter one day and I have been advocating for ADA access on that side as well.”
With a balance in an old road investment from previous years Uribe explained that those funds may be used to reinvest in the park like adding exercise equipment and resurfacing the basketball courts. Another option to fund the upgrades if the CDBG grant is unsuccessful, he added, was through the General Fund or the Public Benefits Fund.
“I heard some great ideas, from new energy-efficient lights throughout the trail as well as placing outdoor exercise equipment within sight of the children’s slides so while the kids play the adults can work out,” expressed Uribe.
The basketball court improvement could begin by the end of the year and the other improvements are slated for the beginning of 2022.