Arsenal Park Improvements Approved, Project Cost Significantly Higher Than Expected

Photo by Charlie BreitroseArsenal Park will be getting a major overhaul. Here it is set up for the Watertown Arts Market. The second phase of renovations at Arsenal Park was approved by the City Council, which will include improvements to the recreation areas, but came in more than $4 million higher than originally budgeted. On Tuesday night, the City Council unanimously approved borrowing $10.35 million to cover the cost of the project. The project will make significant improvements to the park in the East End, said City Manager George Proakis.

Replacing Watertown Senior Center Included in City’s 5-Year Capital Plan

Courtesy of the City of WatertownThe City’s Capital Improvement Plan includes replacing the Watertown Senior Center. Building a new Senior Center made the list of projects planned to be undertaken by the City of Watertown over the next five years, Watertown City Manager George Proakis at Tuesday night’s City Council meeting. Proakis presented the Fiscal Year 2025-29 Capital Improvement Plan, which includes $210 million of projects with $93 million of general obligation bonds to cover part of the cost. Senior Center

The City explored replacing the Senior Center in 2022 as part of a review of the Phillips Building site. That study by Ai3 Architects, done during the planning for the new Watertown High School, looked at tearing down the former Phillips School, but Proakis said that would be too disruptive for the Watertown Public Schools administration, as well as Watertown Cable that now resides in the basement.

Summer of Upgrades at Multiple Watertown Fields & Parks

The artificial turf has been removed from Victory Field, and will be replaced over the summer. (Photo by Charlie Breitrose)

This summer some of Watertown’s fields and recreation facilities have been filled with construction crews and equipment, instead of residents and athletic equipment. The football and baseball fields at Victory Field, the courts at Moxley Field, and the spray pad at Filippello Park all have ongoing construction projects. Recreation Director Peter Centola thanked City Manager George Proakis for placing a priority on completing some delayed park and field projects. “One thing I am very appreciative of Mr. Proakis and leadership and the City Council is for really just understanding that you can’t continue to have projects on the backlog and not do it,” Centola said.

Arts Market Returns to Watertown This Weekend

The 2022 Watertown Arts Market will take place at Arsenal Park on Saturday, Aug. 13. The following information was provided by the Watertown Arts Market:

The Watertown Arts Market will take place at Arsenal Park this Saturday, Aug. 13 from 12 p.m.-5 p.m. Join us in celebrating our local artists, arts and cultural organizations, and related businesses serving Watertown! The Watertown Arts Market is free to attend.

See What’s Happening at the 2022 Watertown Arts Market

Charlie BreitroseThe Watertown Arts Market returns to Arsenal Park in 2022. The following information was provided by the Watertown Arts Market:

The Watertown Arts Market returns to Arsenal Park on Saturday, Aug. 13th, noon-5 p.m. Rain date of Aug. 14. Over 120 artists and organizations who live or work in the area will be there – we hope you will be too! 

The Watertown Arts Market is an initiative of the Watertown Business Coalition, this year in partnership with the City of Watertown.

Watertown Comes Out to Celebrate the Town’s Creative Talents at First Arts Market

Charlie BreitroseVisitors at the first Watertown Arts Market had a variety of tables to visit. People strolling around Arsenal Park on Saturday got a glimpse of the artistic creativity that Watertown has to offer during the first Watertown Arts Market. More than 70 artists and crafters and community groups set up tables along the oval path that rings the field at Arsenal Park. The event attracted painters, quilters, ceramic sculptors, authors, jewelry makers, and more. The east end of the park featured a series of bands, and grab a bite to eat.

Victory Field Stadium, Spray Areas Opening in Watertown

The spray pad at Fillippello Park reopened from the COVID-19 shutdown on July 11. The turf area at Victory Field and the spray pads in two Watertown parks, two of the last Recreation facilities to remain closed during the pandemic, will reopen on Saturday, July 11. Town Manager Michael Driscoll announced the openings in his latest COVID-19 Update (read the whole update here). The Victory Field Turf, which is located in the football/baseball area of the complex, will will be open from 8 a.m. to 10 p.m.

The spray pads, located at Arsenal and Filippello parks, will be open from 10 a.m. to 7 p.m. There will be a limit of eight people at a time on the spray pad at Arsenal Park, according to Driscoll’s update, and 15 at once at the one in Filippello Park

Watertown’s recreational facilities and activities’ rules and regulations will be guided by the Governor’s Phase III reopening plan, which began on July 6th, Driscoll wrote. This includes staying at least six feet apart, and wearing a face covering over the nose and mouth.

Fixing Sinking Areas Part of Renovation Plans at Arsenal Park

A drawing of the proposed renovation of Arsenal Park. This shows the 25 percent design plan, which the Conservation Commission approved in 2019. The areas of sinking are in the upper left corner, near the playground, the oval driveway and the pathways connecting them. Town officials set a goal of completing the renovations of Arsenal Park by the end of 2021, and part of the work that will be done will be to fix the sinking area of the park near the playground, driveway and parking lot. On June 3, the Conservation Commission saw a timeline that, if accomplished, would enable to project to be planned, bid and constructed by the end of the construction season in 2021.