The Jaxson

Jacksonville by Neighborhood => Urban Neighborhoods => Riverside/Avondale => Topic started by: m74reeves on June 23, 2013, 03:53:55 PM

Title: Willow Branch Park conditions
Post by: m74reeves on June 23, 2013, 03:53:55 PM
Anyone know why 2 of the lamps are gone in the interior sidewalk of the Willow Branch park? I saw these knocked over (at 2 different times). Now they are gone and the lights in the middle of the park aren't working.

Also, does anyone know why the basketball backboards, hoops and baskets are now gone, too? I just noticed that today.  I think there are only 1 or 2 usable goals.
Title: Re: Willow Branch Park conditions
Post by: Dog Walker on June 24, 2013, 09:37:38 AM
Park maintenance funds have been cut every budget cycle for the past several years.  What you are seeing is a result.

Parks neglected, libraries closed, but we are going to have the biggest jumbotrons of any city in the world.  Big whoop.

Title: Re: Willow Branch Park conditions
Post by: fsujax on June 24, 2013, 09:46:28 AM
Because our mayor doesn't want to raise taxes. Call him and let him know how you feel. Looks like you are going to have to do what we try to do in Springfield. Just take care of it ourselves the best we can.
Title: Re: Willow Branch Park conditions
Post by: cline on June 24, 2013, 09:55:55 AM
^It's not just the mayor, the Jax general population doesn't want taxes raised either.  I guess it is hard for people to make the connection that in order to have "nice things" we may have to raise taxes.  Whenever raising taxes is mentioned all the ex-Tea partiers start crying. 
Title: Re: Willow Branch Park conditions
Post by: Tacachale on June 24, 2013, 10:16:16 AM
^Part of the reason we have a mayor is to make the tough decisions. This has not been a trait of the current mayor.
Title: Re: Willow Branch Park conditions
Post by: avonjax on June 24, 2013, 10:38:05 AM
We are of all reaping the reward of "NEVER RAISE A DIME OF TAXES." Rising costs effect us all but we refuse to raise the income of the city. Someday in the future our city will be an even bigger dump covered with weeds. The policy of no new taxes   (or raising the existing taxes,) didn't work in the past, (it didn't take long for Sr. Bush to recant on his famous war chant,) and it doesn't work now. But politicians know that raising any taxes in this current political climate is suicide. Maybe, just maybe when all the amenities that make our communities better for ALL are gone, we will realize you can't run a city without money. For me the jumbotrons, if paid for with money from funds dedicated to that end, are just fine. Maybe it will lure more business and people to Jacksonville and give us more exposure. It appears the only way to raise revenue is to grow the population.
Title: Re: Willow Branch Park conditions
Post by: RiversideLoki on June 24, 2013, 01:26:02 PM
Even when funds were decent, Willowbranch park was a dump. Seriously. Drug baggies and needles in the mulch. Broken equipment, trash everywhere. It's not just a problem of lack of funds, it's a lack of respect by people who utilize the park.

It's a beautiful park,and it deserves our love. Our children play there, basketball players play there, softball teams play there, kickball teams play there, Lee highschool marching band and football practice there. It's genuinely used to its fullest extent.

Maybe we should organize a park cleanup? I used to live right by that park but have recently moved to Ortega, but my daughter's mother still lives close and I want to see that park safe and beautiful for my daughter for years to come.

Save Willowbranch!
Title: Re: Willow Branch Park conditions
Post by: Shwaz on June 24, 2013, 02:16:01 PM
Park maintenance funds have been cut every budget cycle for the past several years.  What you are seeing is a result.

Parks neglected, libraries closed, but we are going to have the biggest jumbotrons of any city in the world.  Big whoop.



We're also going to have a 1st class stadium to attract a much larger array of national events. Isn't Khan pretty much covering the actual scoreboards himself with the city picking up the majority of the overall renovation to the rest of the stadium?

Wonder if Willow Branch park will host a NCAA National Championship game, Super Bowl or next Rolling Stones concert?  ::)

We are of all reaping the reward of "NEVER RAISE A DIME OF TAXES." Rising costs effect us all but we refuse to raise the income of the city. Someday in the future our city will be an even bigger dump covered with weeds. The policy of no new taxes   (or raising the existing taxes,) didn't work in the past, (it didn't take long for Sr. Bush to recant on his famous war chant,) and it doesn't work now. But politicians know that raising any taxes in this current political climate is suicide. Maybe, just maybe when all the amenities that make our communities better for ALL are gone, we will realize you can't run a city without money. For me the jumbotrons, if paid for with money from funds dedicated to that end, are just fine. Maybe it will lure more business and people to Jacksonville and give us more exposure. It appears the only way to raise revenue is to grow the population.

And when does the tax freeze start? Local & federal taxes have all gone up... along with healthcare, utilities,  gas, milk & eggs. Most companies started freezing wage increases & 401K contributions as soon as the economy took a dive and most are still using the economy as the reason to keep them frozen. Salary increases are waaay off from annual inflation and we're expected to volunteer for additional taxes?
Title: Re: Willow Branch Park conditions
Post by: Tacachale on June 24, 2013, 02:19:57 PM
Something has to give. In this case, it's services and quality of life.
Title: Re: Willow Branch Park conditions
Post by: peestandingup on June 24, 2013, 02:41:01 PM
^It's not just the mayor, the Jax general population doesn't want taxes raised either.  I guess it is hard for people to make the connection that in order to have "nice things" we may have to raise taxes.  Whenever raising taxes is mentioned all the ex-Tea partiers start crying.

Its not that simple. A lot of times when you raise taxes, it lines the pockets of special interests. But granted Jax as a whole doesn't seem to give two shits about anything that's for the public (public spaces, parks, mass transit, etc). You see it everywhere you go here.

I too have noticed the parks becoming less & less desirable places to want to hang out. I personally think its done on purpose to make them more of a dump, attract the wrong elements & to justify even more why not to spend any money on them (just like transit in this town) Me & a friend biked by Hemming on Saturday afternoon & it looked worse than I've ever remembered seeing it. Trash everywhere, lots more homeless, none of the fountains looked like they ere working, etc.

Like I said, on purpose.
Title: Re: Willow Branch Park conditions
Post by: Dog Walker on June 24, 2013, 02:58:32 PM
Shwaz,  tax revenues have gone down, not up.  Property values starting falling in 2008.  Ours is a property tax based system.  Revenues went down.

It was suggested to the City Council that they could raise the millage rate so that collected taxes would remain the same and all of this stuff would not have to be cut, but they saw that as a tax increase although it would have been revenue neutral and wouldn't pass it.

Now the Mayor, instead of making the hard choices, demanded an across the board cut of all departments.  Cowardly and dumb!  All city services are not equally important and there should have been tough decisions made about priorities, but he wimped out.
Title: Re: Willow Branch Park conditions
Post by: fsujax on June 24, 2013, 03:07:17 PM
What's interesting is Clay and St Johns Counties have raised their milleage rates all by vote of the Commission and not a peep or outcry. Same goes for the extension of the gas taxes all raised by consent of their Commissions. Where is the outrage in those hard core red counties? it doesn't really exist. I think our Mayor and City Council are just spineless to do what is needed. They are giving into some kind of fear of something that I believe doesn't really exist or at least to the extent they believe it does.
Title: Re: Willow Branch Park conditions
Post by: fsquid on June 24, 2013, 03:33:46 PM
What's interesting is Clay and St Johns Counties have raised their milleage rates all by vote of the Commission and not a peep or outcry. Same goes for the extension of the gas taxes all raised by consent of their Commissions. Where is the outrage in those hard core red counties? it doesn't really exist. I think our Mayor and City Council are just spineless to do what is needed. They are giving into some kind of fear of something that I believe doesn't really exist or at least to the extent they believe it does.

I believe it is because their populace seems to understand revenue neutral.  I'm sure their home values are falling.
Title: Re: Willow Branch Park conditions
Post by: mbwright on June 24, 2013, 03:46:19 PM
If the city wastes/mismanages money that they have now, adding more will not help the situation.  It will just be more money to waste, or hand out to your buddies.
Title: Re: Willow Branch Park conditions
Post by: Shwaz on June 24, 2013, 03:57:27 PM
Shwaz,  tax revenues have gone down, not up.  Property values starting falling in 2008.  Ours is a property tax based system.  Revenues went down.

It was suggested to the City Council that they could raise the millage rate so that collected taxes would remain the same and all of this stuff would not have to be cut, but they saw that as a tax increase although it would have been revenue neutral and wouldn't pass it.

Now the Mayor, instead of making the hard choices, demanded an across the board cut of all departments.  Cowardly and dumb!  All city services are not equally important and there should have been tough decisions made about priorities, but he wimped out.

So, home owners should pay more because they're mortgages are under water? All while costs sky rocket on every other form of 'cost of living' and wages are either non-existent or stuck in neutral?

What's interesting is Clay and St Johns Counties have raised their milleage rates all by vote of the Commission and not a peep or outcry.

Aren't they still below Duval County though, overall?

http://www.sjcpa.us/Millage%20Rates.html (http://www.sjcpa.us/Millage%20Rates.html)
http://www.coj.net/departments/property-appraiser/docs/2012-proposed-millage.aspx (http://www.coj.net/departments/property-appraiser/docs/2012-proposed-millage.aspx)
Title: Re: Willow Branch Park conditions
Post by: natmgriff on June 24, 2013, 04:04:24 PM
I am mobile so I can't search now. I actually asked about the state of willowbranch park just a week or two ago on coj's Facebook, jaxparks Facebook and in an email to coj. I got a reply on Jaxparks FB and basically they said Jim Love ordered the nets down because of complaints from residents that games were bringing negative activity. I used to enjoy watching the full court games. We all know what this is about. I'll try to link when I get home but if you look at jaxparks Facebook page you should be able to see my question and their reply. As soon as the nets came down the park went to utter $h!t.
Title: Re: Willow Branch Park conditions
Post by: m74reeves on June 24, 2013, 04:12:55 PM
I am mobile so I can't search now. I actually asked about the state of willowbranch park just a week or two ago on coj's Facebook, jaxparks Facebook and in an email to coj. I got a reply on Jaxparks FB and basically they said Jim Love ordered the nets down because of complaints from residents that games were bringing negative activity. I used to enjoy watching the full court games. We all know what this is about. I'll try to link when I get home but if you look at jaxparks Facebook page you should be able to see my question and their reply. As soon as the nets came down the park went to utter $h!t.

Woah! I walk in the park every day...the grass is not cut frequently, and there is trash sometimes, but I've never seen needles or anything like that. However, it's not as aesthetically appealing as other parks in the RA area, for sure. When I saw the lights down, I wondered if vandalism or what. I really just noticed the ball courts over the weekend as there are not as many people over there playing.

I saw parks there today grading the ball field, for what it's worth.
Title: Re: Willow Branch Park conditions
Post by: natmgriff on June 24, 2013, 05:48:46 PM
This was my question and response on the JaxParks Page. I can't seem to link to just the thread, but here is it, or you can read it on their page https://www.facebook.com/friendsofjaxparks?ref=ts&fref=ts

Natalie Milstead Griffith
What is the deal with Willowbranch Park? About 2 years ago I frequently would walk through it with my infant to go to the library. It was fairly clean and up-kept. Not as nice as other Riverside-Avondale parks, but not horrible. We walked up there at the request of my 2 yr old last night and it is HORRIBLE. Garbage everywhere, all the nets, except 2, torn from the hoops, a broken swing, graffiti all over the play structure - and it was FILTHY. The grass looked like it hadn't been mowed in weeks. Who is supposed to maintain the park? The city? The community? Why does Boone Park look so nice but Willowbranch is disgusting? I would love to know who to contact about this. I remember years ago, coming home late at night, I would drive past the park on my way home and there were almost always police officers patrolling the area. Obviously that is not the case anymore because the park looks like a late night party spot with all the bottles and cans and cigarette butts strewn everywhere. It really saddens me because this is the closest park to us, in a convenient location right next to the library, but it is so gross and frankly dangerous looking at this point I am scared to let my toddler play there :(
Like ·  · June 11 at 12:51pm
Top Comments
Shirley Carr Poll likes this.


JaxParks Thank you for sharing your concerns about Willowbranch Park. We have sent a maintenance crew to the park to investigate the concerns, pick up trash, remove graffiti and make any necessary repairs. For future, we will schedule a crew to go to the park each Monday morning for litter pickup since it is a high use area. The park is on a mowing schedule of two times a week as are most of our parks. We will make sure the schedule is maintained. The basketball nets were removed recently by JaxParks at the request of Councilman Love. He made the request after receiving complaints that the courts were attracting negative activity. We left the rims so that people could still use the courts for less agressive games. We also recently asked JSO to increase patrols in the area during weekends. We will let them know there are still concerns about activity at the park. Thank you again for contacting us. It's important that citizens keep us informed about issues in your parks so we can continue to provide a quality park experience.
Like · Reply · 2 · June 11 at 2:33pm · Edited


Natalie Milstead Griffith Thanks for your reply. As far as the hoops go, wow, it looks way worse in the park, more garbage, etc than when I was there earlier this year and full court games were going on. If that was supposd to deter criminal activity, it sure didn't help. If anything it's worse. Maybe the nets need to go back up so the courts can still be used and not look like utter trash and just have more patrolling in the area! I sure hope the park gets back into some sort of reasonable shape. It's making a really nice area of riverside just look awful and going unused by residents because of the filthiness of it is just going to make it worse and turn it into even a bigger haven for vagrants and litterbugs.
Like · Reply · 4 · June 11 at 2:49pm

Title: Re: Willow Branch Park conditions
Post by: DDC on June 24, 2013, 06:22:58 PM

He made the request after receiving complaints that the courts were attracting negative activity.



What the heck does that mean?  :o  Basketball players are bad news? Removing the nets will stop them from shooting the hoops? Nevermind..... ::)
Title: Re: Willow Branch Park conditions
Post by: Non-RedNeck Westsider on June 24, 2013, 06:27:56 PM

He made the request after receiving complaints that the courts were attracting black youths negative activity.



What the heck does that mean?  :o  Basketball players are bad news? Removing the nets will stop them from shooting the hoops? Nevermind..... ::)

Not that you really need it, but I'll clear it up for you and anyone else. 

I left the board of a certain local athletic park for doing the same exact thing, for the reason that I mention and using the same terminology as Love. 
Title: Re: Willow Branch Park conditions
Post by: TheCat on June 24, 2013, 06:29:00 PM
The facebook interaction in pics:

(http://i.imgur.com/kpZdVPN.jpg)

(http://i.imgur.com/bGKskp5.jpg)

@natmgriff, kind of amazing. It's another "never ceases to amaze me" moment with Jacksonville and Jim Love. I'll make an assumption that that Jim Love asked for the rims to come down and in a fairly patronizing move the parks department removed the nets. I would be hard pressed to believe that Jim Love requested for the nets to be removed to ward off negative activity.

I suppose it is likely for a group of hardcore negative activitiers to come to the park and see the missing nets and decide they better go somewhere else to be negative.

I'd love love love to know what negative activity the basketball nets were attracting. Was it muggers? Rapists? Murderers? Or, basket ball players?

@natmgriff, did they remove any rims? You had mentioned that full court games were no longer doable?

Maybe, the people coming are overtly pessimistic. Jim Love is a glass is half-full type of guy.
Title: Re: Willow Branch Park conditions
Post by: TheCat on June 24, 2013, 06:30:25 PM

He made the request after receiving complaints that the courts were attracting black youths negative activity.



What the heck does that mean?  :o  Basketball players are bad news? Removing the nets will stop them from shooting the hoops? Nevermind..... ::)

Not that you really need it, but I'll clear it up for you and anyone else. 

I left the board of a certain local athletic park for doing the same exact thing, for the reason that I mention and using the same terminology as Love.

Did they remove just the nets? Or the actual rims?
Title: Re: Willow Branch Park conditions
Post by: Non-RedNeck Westsider on June 24, 2013, 06:34:17 PM
At the park that I was associated with, they removed the entire goal.

At Willowbranch, I'm not sure.
Title: Re: Willow Branch Park conditions
Post by: natmgriff on June 24, 2013, 06:36:36 PM
The rims are still there. I had an email response as well which I can't seem to find at the moment. They left the nets on two of the half court hoops but they are diagonal so you can't even play a real half court game either. I mean I guess it's possible to play without nets but it makes for a pretty crummy game since the ball just goes flying instead of gong down through the net. These guys were playing real games, they had big Gatorade water coolers and people that watched and hung out. They were chased out. That would be crazy to play without nets for games like that.
Title: Re: Willow Branch Park conditions
Post by: natmgriff on June 24, 2013, 06:41:44 PM
I used to bring my BABY up there to watch. Now it's so nasty and filthy I can't even take him to the park to play. I thought it was really cool to live in a diverse neighborhood that we could watch people with mad skills play basketball. Well, not anymore. Now the park is just skeeved out.
Title: Re: Willow Branch Park conditions
Post by: DDC on June 24, 2013, 07:56:52 PM
I used to bring my BABY up there to watch. Now it's so nasty and filthy I can't even take him to the park to play. I thought it was really cool to live in a diverse neighborhood that we could watch people with mad skills play basketball. Well, not anymore. Now the park is just skeeved out.

So did the park go downhill after the nets were removed? Perhaps the negative acting people kept the really negative active people out..... who knows.... ???

Title: Re: Willow Branch Park conditions
Post by: Bridges on June 24, 2013, 08:08:43 PM
Sometimes you have to laugh, or you'll go crazy.  Removing the nets from a basketball court to discourage basketball, but leaving the hoops up so...people can still play basketball?  I'm at a loss. 

This is the exact thing that is wrong with Jacksonville's leadership on so many levels.  Unbelievable.
Title: Re: Willow Branch Park conditions
Post by: WmNussbaum on June 24, 2013, 08:10:03 PM
Who cares about this park? Doesn't really matter. We're getting the WORLD'S  biggest jumbotron.
Title: Re: Willow Branch Park conditions
Post by: m74reeves on June 24, 2013, 08:37:26 PM
Quote
Did they remove just the nets? Or the actual rims?


I was just in the park. there are 6 basketball goals there. 1 has no backboard at all, 3 have backboard and no rims, and the remaining 2 have the rims still (as natmgriff states, they are diagonal from each other; there are metal nets though).

there were about 6 or 7 young men playing and i asked when the backboards and rims were removed. one guy said about a month ago b/c on "sundays a lot of people come up here to play and there was a lot of trash talk happening and trash left in the park."  i should have asked him who told him that the removal of the goals was punishment for that, but i was a bit shocked at his response. plus, i was interrupting their game. :)

btw, there was a cop sitting on cherry street near the baseball field/library as well.

it looks trashy to me w/o the goals and such...that coupled with the high grass makes it feel not maintained. and if the willowbranch library is closed, well, i don't want to think about that.

Title: Re: Willow Branch Park conditions
Post by: Lucasjj on June 24, 2013, 08:56:58 PM
I like the city's methods for fixing our parks. Just destroy what ever amenities exist and that will be sure to solve the problem.

I was excited for Jim Love to be my council member and voted for him, but he has been a total detriment to the area.
Title: Re: Willow Branch Park conditions
Post by: JayBird on June 24, 2013, 09:08:17 PM
I understand that we all pay property taxes and that a portion of these taxes are to maintain our public spaces, however in Somerset County, NJ; in Springfield (the park at Boulevard and 5th) and now in Clay County it was/is the COMMUNITY that keep the parks clean and maintained.  After all, it is an extension of your yard, your home.  The city obviously is responsible for the mowing, light maintenance and even graffiti removal.  But I know that over the course of my 4 years living off Pearl Street we kicked in $$ at least 3 times to replace broken backboards even a bench once. Why? Bc we used it! 

Yes, it is the responsibility of the City, but maybe people should show some community pride.  It takes less than 15 seconds to bend over and pick up and trash.  And if you see needles on the ground on don't pick them and dispose of them, than shame on you.  You're no better than the person who put it there.  And when you do this, the others realize it, talk to you, and you find out about the reasons behind these complaints. 

Please know, this is not an attack on this community, just a general observation for communities all through northeast Florida. I know, I know it is much easier to rant about something that has no bearing whatsoever (big screens) and type of letters of protest.  What's that saying, if you want it done right, do it yourself?
Title: Re: Willow Branch Park conditions
Post by: m74reeves on June 24, 2013, 09:22:36 PM
i agree, JayBird.  i pick up trash when i see it...i did so tonight.

i just don't like removal of amenities like goals/backboards and especially 2 of the lights in the middle of the park. i don't mean a light bulb is out, i mean the entire post and lamp is gone. i'd like to know how much that costs...and i wonder if they are gone b/c of vandalism or what. if that's the case, that really bothers me.

this park does see a lot of use.
Title: Re: Willow Branch Park conditions
Post by: JayBird on June 24, 2013, 09:44:20 PM
Little Lord Fauntleroy Mayor John Peyton HAD to get the Superbowl Here..WE are going to pay for it for a decade or more..Hope you'all made a lot of money for it..I made $3000k and went into the hospital over it.(9k) at my expense.

I wouldn't Piss on John Peyton if he was on Fire..nor would I patronize a Gate store with their markup's..

Then I guess it is good that decade is almost over.

i agree, JayBird.  i pick up trash when i see it...i did so tonight.

i just don't like removal of amenities like goals/backboards and especially 2 of the lights in the middle of the park. i don't mean a light bulb is out, i mean the entire post and lamp is gone. i'd like to know how much that costs...and i wonder if they are gone b/c of vandalism or what. if that's the case, that really bothers me.

this park does see a lot of use.

Now the lighting is a concern, but does the city know?  It wasn't mentioned in the FB post and I am sure by 4 or 5 pm all of the JaxParks workers are going home.
Title: Re: Willow Branch Park conditions
Post by: DDC on June 24, 2013, 09:54:41 PM
I like the city's methods for fixing our parks. Just destroy what ever amenities exist and that will be sure to solve the problem.

I was excited for Jim Love to be my council member and voted for him, but he has been a total detriment to the area.

That would be like someone removing the tables and chairs at Hemming.... No Wait.... ???
Title: Re: Willow Branch Park conditions
Post by: m74reeves on June 24, 2013, 10:12:49 PM
i emailed mr. love about basketball goals and the lighting, but no response. i will call parks tomorrow and see if i can find out any deets.
Title: Re: Willow Branch Park conditions
Post by: I-10east on June 25, 2013, 07:27:44 AM
It seems like the decrease in basketball rims/courts is prevalent throughout the entire city. I remember when Emmett Reed Park in Durkeeville used to have 12 outdoor goals (2 full courts; 6 indoor goals in the gym that's still there). Well when they built that tennis complex (that wiped out a softball field BTW) they only left two freaking outdoor goals (new court). I never been a fan of wiping out existing useful infrastructure, there's too much freaking land in this city to build elsewhere. Sorry for going WAY off course.
Title: Re: Willow Branch Park conditions
Post by: thelakelander on June 25, 2013, 08:25:52 AM
^Interesting.  So what do we expect our youth to do if they can't spend time enjoying the parks?  I wonder what the unintended consequences of our actions will be?
Title: Re: Willow Branch Park conditions
Post by: PeeJayEss on June 25, 2013, 09:19:12 AM
I live directly across the Willow Branch and I don't see the problem with "negative activity," but I think I might know what that's a euphemism for (actually, 100% sure). I had a neighbor that I had never met before come up to me and warn me about the dangers of basketball players. She basically advised me to call the cops anytime someone was playing basketball, with a smile and nod as to the type of people attracted to basketball courts. I'm not saying the issue is old white people that don't want minorities hanging around their houses but...no wait, that's exactly what I'm saying.

Basketball players talking trash?!? Oh my! It is a park meant for recreation, not a nature preserve for the surrounding homes to look on. Better some yutes "making a racket" (playing games) than tumbleweeds and bums. The biggest commotion I've ever seen there in 3 years has been two girls having a heated argument after 10pm. They weren't there playing basketball, and they weren't littering, so I don't think this is an epidemic. The place almost always empties out once the lights go out, and the rest of the day there is just a lot of great community activity (flag football, softball leagues, dogs playing fetch, cookouts, picnicking ). Sure, you occasionally get some jerk being rude, but that anecdote happens at the country club as well. I've literally only had anything happen once, and it was just some kid playing football with his friends that decided he'd run his mouth at a random passerby to look cool. Again, it was just an idiot kid, and the whole group averted their eyes and put on their library voices very quickly once I (and, likely more effectively, my APBT) turned to look at them.

Jim Love seems to get worse every day. Does he even have the authority to request changes to park maintenance activities?

Thanks for bringing this up reeves and nat. The people in the park are not the problem. The people in charge of the park are. Half of Willow Branch, where there are trees and no fields or courts, is like Boone. I don't see much issue with trash/maintenance in that "backwoodsy" part, as it is maintained similarly to Boone and receives the same type of use. However, the courts and fields get much more intense use than Boone or the other half of the park and, as such, they need more maintenance in my opinion. People are out there re-striping the field somewhat frequently (and putting up temporary outfield fencing before some games even) and mowing the grass fairly regularly (though it looks worse between mowings in the summer as the grass is growing ridiculously fast, probably because it's not really grass). Perhaps they need a better setup with the trash cans. All the trash cans in this park are pretty ghetto barrels that appear to be temporary and most have holes all over them. I wouldn't be too surprised if a lot of the trash in the park was at one time placed in a proper receptacle, they are that bad. Durable, permanent, well-placed trash cans that are regularly emptied might be all that's needed.

And keep the hoops in order. I never understood metal nets. Sure they are more durable, but they are almost always broken anyway. A cloth net is at least easy and cheap to replace, and neighbors probably wouldn't have a problem doing that. And removing the nets is just a silly step no matter how you slice it. Removing the backboards, however, is unacceptable.
Title: Re: Willow Branch Park conditions
Post by: Garden guy on June 25, 2013, 09:45:23 AM
Im suprised you guys are upset about public parks in jax..this is a republican conservative city and that group are anti public anything...im suprised they havent pushed to hand this, park over to someone for condos.....this is no suprise...and as for taxes..this is the cheapest city around and it shows
Title: Re: Willow Branch Park conditions
Post by: Captain Zissou on June 25, 2013, 09:48:41 AM
It's so frustrating that it is our city's policy to inhibit the negative ( in this case, "negative ;) ;)") activities instead of encouraging positive ones. If trash talking is the issue, make the park more kid friendly. People would be less likely to drop an f bomb with six young children and their mothers within earshot. If they do, either one of the players or one of the mothers will let them have it. I've been around enough pick up games to know that this will be the case.

When I lived in the area, I would often ride my bike through the park on the wooded side. There are 1 or 2 bums that I saw there consistently.  I would rather see more basketball courts and fewer bums, than a desolate and unmaintained park that becomes a refuge for the homeless. The less appealing you make a place, the lesser kind of person you'll find using it. If you want to get the well to do folks outside, make it inticing to them. You don't do that by taking away amenities. You do that by adding in more.
Title: Re: Willow Branch Park conditions
Post by: JayBird on June 25, 2013, 09:53:09 AM
Im suprised you guys are upset about public parks in jax..this is a republican conservative city and that group are anti public anything...im suprised they havent pushed to hand this, park over to someone for condos.....this is no suprise...and as for taxes..this is the cheapest city around and it shows

Aaah yes, that "other" Jacksonville that exists in small minds ... Say isn't Neal Boortz coming on soon?
Title: Re: Willow Branch Park conditions
Post by: Josh on June 25, 2013, 09:54:27 AM
Im suprised you guys are upset about public parks in jax..this is a republican conservative city and that group are anti public anything...im suprised they havent pushed to hand this, park over to someone for condos.....this is no suprise...and as for taxes..this is the cheapest city around and it shows

As easy as it is to blame this on the case of "but that's socialism!!!" like a lot of things in this city, this is even worse. It's just an extension of the kind of government-sponsored institutional racism that's existed since this place was called Cowford. Same goes for why the JTA bus system is decades behind their peers.
Title: Re: Willow Branch Park conditions
Post by: JayBird on June 25, 2013, 10:00:44 AM
It's so frustrating that it is our city's policy to inhibit the negative ( in this case, "negative ;) ;)") activities instead of encouraging positive ones. If trash talking is the issue, make the park more kid friendly. People would be less likely to drop an f bomb with six young children and their mothers within earshot. If they do, either one of the players or one of the mothers will let them have it. I've been around enough pick up games to know that this will be the case.

When I lived in the area, I would often ride my bike through the park on the wooded side. There are 1 or 2 bums that I saw there consistently.  I would rather see more basketball courts and fewer bums, than a desolate and unmaintained park that becomes a refuge for the homeless. The less appealing you make a place, the lesser kind of person you'll find using it. If you want to get the well to do folks outside, make it inticing to them. You don't do that by taking away amenities. You do that by adding in more.

Exactly +100, kind of makes you wonder if there really wasn't another motive to this action (as already pointed out). Seriously Jacksonville, it is 2013 ... Time to grow up.  If this is racially motivated, then it is time to move that man out of office.  Paula Deen makes some great tasting food, but that didn't make a difference when she crossed a line.  And is calling a slur really any different from pushing groups out?  If such accusations are true, of course.
Title: Re: Willow Branch Park conditions
Post by: Bridges on June 25, 2013, 10:00:55 AM
The motivations for removing amenities at Willow Park may very well be racist, but to me, that isn't the biggest problem. 

This is once again the power of a select few to use their connections and bend government to it's will and get what it wants at the expense of the city.  This is a disturbing trend that we have seen repeated over and over and over.

Reference:
"Negative" activity at Willow Branch
Neighbor across from Intuiton
Parking in Avondale
Sound from Met Park
Benches in Hemming Plaza
Land Speculators

When will our leaders start standing up for the whole citizens of this city?  Not just those with a direct line to their ear?
Title: Re: Willow Branch Park conditions
Post by: JayBird on June 25, 2013, 10:04:44 AM
The motivations for removing amenities at Willow Park may very well be racist, but to me, that isn't the biggest problem. 

This is once again the power of a select few to use their connections and bend government to it's will and get what it wants at the expense of the city.  This is a disturbing trend that we have seen repeated over and over and over.

Reference:
"Negative" activity at Willow Branch
Neighbor across from Intuiton
Parking in Avondale
Sound from Met Park
Benches in Hemming Plaza
Land Speculators

When will our leaders start standing up for the whole citizens of this city?  Not just those with a direct line to their ear?

Simple, no one holds them accountable.  People hear about it, read about, complain about it, move on.  Then, surprisingly, continue to vote them into their positions. 
Title: Re: Willow Branch Park conditions
Post by: Cheshire Cat on June 25, 2013, 12:16:51 PM
The motivations for removing amenities at Willow Park may very well be racist, but to me, that isn't the biggest problem. 

This is once again the power of a select few to use their connections and bend government to it's will and get what it wants at the expense of the city.  This is a disturbing trend that we have seen repeated over and over and over.

Reference:
"Negative" activity at Willow Branch
Neighbor across from Intuiton
Parking in Avondale
Sound from Met Park
Benches in Hemming Plaza
Land Speculators

When will our leaders start standing up for the whole citizens of this city?  Not just those with a direct line to their ear?

Simple, no one holds them accountable.  People hear about it, read about, complain about it, move on.  Then, surprisingly, continue to vote them into their positions. 
Some of us hold them accountable, I wish more folks would do the same. ;)
Title: Re: Willow Branch Park conditions
Post by: Garden guy on June 25, 2013, 07:33:16 PM
Im suprised you guys are upset about public parks in jax..this is a republican conservative city and that group are anti public anything...im suprised they havent pushed to hand this, park over to someone for condos.....this is no suprise...and as for taxes..this is the cheapest city around and it shows
Title: Re: Willow Branch Park conditions
Post by: JayBird on June 25, 2013, 07:45:17 PM
Yes we know Garden Guy, heard you the first time.  We laughed, enjoyed the moment and moved on.  Go back to your sand box or eat some checkers.
Title: Re: Willow Branch Park conditions
Post by: tufsu1 on June 25, 2013, 09:18:02 PM
Im suprised you guys are upset about public parks in jax..this is a republican conservative city and that group are anti public anything

our Mayor, a Democrat, also seems to be anti-tax/spending
Title: Re: Willow Branch Park conditions
Post by: ChriswUfGator on June 26, 2013, 06:35:15 AM
Im suprised you guys are upset about public parks in jax..this is a republican conservative city and that group are anti public anything

our Mayor, a Democrat, also seems to be anti-tax/spending

Some people will be anything to anybody in order to win an election.
Title: Re: Willow Branch Park conditions
Post by: PeeJayEss on June 26, 2013, 08:48:11 AM
our Mayor, a Democrat, also seems to be anti-tax/spending

Some people will be anything to anybody in order to win an election.

Jacksonville is one of the few places in which Alvin would be considered a Democrat. Everywhere else, he is a slightly right of moderate Republican. He just happened to be running against someone whose policies most closely reflected those of Civil War-era southern Democrats.
Title: Re: Willow Branch Park conditions
Post by: mtraininjax on July 28, 2013, 10:36:35 AM
Nobody seems to be bringing up the simple fact that Willowbranch Park gets used....ALOT! I see football practices, softball games, basketball, cheerleading practices, it gets ALOT of traffic. Conversely, Fishweir Park just down the road and a bit more hidden from the mainstream, gets very little traffic. We bring our dogs out at 5 pm and let them run around with neighbors. There are basketball goals in good shape, lights even too. A nice baseball diamond and a large field for which the dogs enjoy, without being close to the other activities.

Boone Park is a few blocks from me, a nice park, but it does not get used nearly as much by the rough sports, where would you build a football field or a baseball diamond? Won't happen with all the trees, which will never go anywhere, so it is really an apples and oranges thing with me and Boone and Willowbranch.

Not here to tell people what to do, but yeah, if you see garbage, pick it up and throw it away. If you find a table a nasty mess, perhaps you have some wet-ones and can wipe it down for the next person. We are all in this together and while we think the City can do it all for us, it can't and so this is OUR city, take a bit of pride and throw away or clean up a park, next time you are in one.
Title: Re: Willow Branch Park conditions
Post by: icarus on July 28, 2013, 10:48:17 AM
Not here to tell people what to do, but yeah, if you see garbage, pick it up and throw it away. If you find a table a nasty mess, perhaps you have some wet-ones and can wipe it down for the next person. We are all in this together and while we think the City can do it all for us, it can't and so this is OUR city, take a bit of pride and throw away or clean up a park, next time you are in one.

+1
Title: Re: Willow Branch Park conditions
Post by: Dog Walker on July 28, 2013, 05:54:29 PM
+2 !  Don't just walk by a thrown down beer can and complain that the City is not keeping the parks clean.  Pick it up yourself and throw it away.
Title: Re: Willow Branch Park conditions
Post by: m74reeves on July 28, 2013, 07:12:23 PM
i agree, yes, pick up trash. simple solution and something i do, on almost a daily basis at this park.

the trash is not why i originally posted this. it's about removed basketball goals/backboards and lighting in the park.

but when should i expect to hear back from jim love about the amenities that have been removed from the park? i have yet to get a reply.
Title: Re: Willow Branch Park conditions
Post by: Noone on July 28, 2013, 11:21:39 PM
Not here to tell people what to do, but yeah, if you see garbage, pick it up and throw it away. If you find a table a nasty mess, perhaps you have some wet-ones and can wipe it down for the next person. We are all in this together and while we think the City can do it all for us, it can't and so this is OUR city, take a bit of pride and throw away or clean up a park, next time you are in one.

+1

+3
Just to add when you highlight OUR city.
We have a new DIA.
2013-373-Regulatory Compliance Coordinator

Title: Re: Willow Branch Park conditions
Post by: Overstreet on July 29, 2013, 09:22:02 AM
Im suprised you guys are upset about public parks in jax..this is a republican conservative city and .........

Check with the elections office web site and you'll find there are more democrats in Jax than republicans. Jacksonville is a conservative city.  Not all conservatives are republican.
Title: Re: Willow Branch Park conditions
Post by: fsujax on July 29, 2013, 10:11:41 AM
DId anyone catch the story on Channel 4 I think it was about the park? They interviewed Jim Love.
Title: Re: Willow Branch Park conditions
Post by: mtraininjax on July 29, 2013, 05:17:25 PM
I don't watch Channel 4. Too much sensationalism. And that says a lot about the news.