Upland expands downtown parklets

As part of an ongoing effort to revitalize its downtown, the Upland City Council recently approved a plan to improve four parklets to create spaces where people can congregate.

The city plans to convert existing parking spaces in center medians on Second Avenue and Ninth Street into “mini parks,” which, together with improvements to walkways, it hopes will create a pedestrian friendly environment.

The parks will include bench seating, improved landscaping, trash receptacles and concrete foundations with a decorative design reminiscent of Upland’s agricultural past, including either a magnolia tree or lemon motif.

“The proposed action supports the City’s goal of creating additional public open space and public realm improvements in the Downtown as part of the Downtown revitalization strategy,” read a staff report. “The project encourages a pedestrian-oriented environment with the addition of public open space for patrons to enjoy the open air and outdoor environment in Downtown.”

The plan was first approved in November 2021 with an estimated cost of $180,000. The revised design approved this month will have a budget of $471,633, which will be paid for through a combination of American Rescue Plan Act funds and a community project funding grant from U.S. Congressman Pete Aguilar.

The city contracted with Architerra Design Group to prepare the design plans. During a site visit, Architerra and city staff discussed several obstacles to the project, including making it compliant to the Americans with Disabilities Act and the existence of mature jacaranda trees.

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