Updated below. A simmering controversy over plans to demolish and re-build Peavey Plaza in downtown Minneapolis hit the New York Times Thursday and is drawing attention to concrete-and-water city parks—like Fridley's .
City Plaza Park (next to Fridley City Hall) and Peavey Plaza (next to Orchestra Hall) are similar in several ways. Both use concrete steps to go vertical—the Minneapolis park dips below street level while the Fridley park goes up. And the original water features at both have seen better days—in Minneapolis, the problem is pump failures; in Fridley, budget constraints have kept City Plaza Park dry.
What do you think of City Plaza Park? Have you been there when water flowed? Have you spent time there lately? Should modern-style parks like these be preserved and maintained or torn down and re-built?
Update (2:45 p.m. Thursday): Jack Kirk, director of Fridley's Parks and Recreation Department, provided some information and background on City Plaza Park by email:
The City Plaza (immediately to the south of the Fridley Municipal Center) was built in the early 1980’s. I actually don’t know who designed the park, but I seem to recall some involvement by our Planning Director at the time. It does not get a lot of community use, it is used primarily by people who work in the area as a place to eat lunch, take a break or just visit for a while. Occasionally there are events or activities on the Plaza. Just this past Tuesday, a jazz band group from Fridley Middle School held a concert there over the lunch hour.
It does require some maintenance to the plants (trees and shrubs) in the plaza, but nothing out of the ordinary.
The water feature (fountain) has been broken down for some time now and there are no plans to repair or replace it. When it was in good operating condition, it was a nice amenity ...