Provide More Opportunities for Community Gathering and Recreation

Goal 4: Provide More Opportunities for Community Gathering and Recreation

We value the small town feeling and appreciate the sense of community that results from frequent opportunities for interaction. We support providing places for casual social interaction and organized events that bring members of the community together. We believe in offering opportunities for intergenerational experiences and for sharing of inter-cultural celebration, and we aim to provide recreational opportunities for all ages.

Create new gathering spaces and make better use of existing ones.

Objective 4.1: Create new gathering spaces and make better use of existing ones.

See Also: 

Create a building that can accommodate the senior center and the larger community

Strategy 4.1.1: Create a building that can accommodate the senior center and the larger community

Design and Build a community/senior center

Action Item 4.1.1.1: Design and Build a community/senior center

Fund the design of a facility that can serve both as a senior center and for other community center needs. Include representation from Council on Aging, the Recreation Commission and other potential users of the building to develop a space program, operating budget, and architectural design for the facility, and investigate potential funding sources to supplement Town funds. 1 Construct the building when town finances permit.
  • 1. The Selectmen have established a committee to begin this process.
Priority: 
Highest
Timing: 
Medium-Term (complete by 2020)
Primary Inventory Element: 
Facilities
Capital?: 
Yes
Lead Owner: 
Council on Aging<i> </i>
Recreation Commission<i> </i>
Recreation Department<i> </i>
Selectmen<i> </i>
Other Owners: 
Finance Committee

Facilities for pre-school children and parents

Strategy 4.1.2: Facilities for pre-school children and parents

Create and/or make available indoor and outdoor facilities for use by families with young children.

Explore ideas for accomodating preschool children

Action Item 4.1.2.1: Explore ideas for accomodating preschool children

Explore accommodating the needs of families with young children in existing and/or new Town buildings, e.g., re-use of the existing Senior Center and scheduling space in schools and a new Senior Center.
Priority: 
2nd Highest
Timing: 
Short-Term (complete by 2015)
Primary Inventory Element: 
Facilities
Lead Owner: 
Recreation Commission<i> </i>
Recreation Department<i> </i>
Other Owners: 
Citizens and citizen groups
Municipal Properties
School Committees
Selectmen

Encourage use of existing and new gathering spaces

Strategy 4.1.3: Encourage use of existing and new gathering spaces

One-stop reservations and calendar

Action Item 4.1.3.1: One-stop reservations and calendar

Create a ‘one stop’ mechanism for viewing a calendar and reserving meeting spaces in either town or school facilities.1
  • 1. The feasibility of making this system web-based should be explored. Include the library in this system.
Priority: 
2nd Highest
Timing: 
Short-Term (complete by 2015)
Primary Inventory Element: 
Facilities
Lead Owner: 
Information Technology Department<i> </i>
Other Owners: 
Council on Aging
Community Education
Memorial Library
Municipal Properties
School Committees
Selectmen
Ripe?: 
Yes

Outdoor areas for gathering in centers

Strategy 4.1.4: Outdoor areas for gathering in centers

Create parks and informal outdoor gathering places in key centers, and encourage commercial opportunities for gathering.

Provide more playgrounds, fields for team sports, parks, and conservation lands.

Objective 4.2: Provide more playgrounds, fields for team sports, parks, and conservation lands.

Parks and play areas.

Strategy 4.2.1: Parks and play areas.

Create and maintain parks and playgrounds, and increase opportunities for active recreation for all age groups.

Implement OSRP (Recreation portion)

Action Item 4.2.1.1: Implement OSRP (Recreation portion)

Implement the recreation recommendations of the 2011 Open Space and Recreation Plan (OSRP). Develop a schedule to maintain and improve existing public playgrounds (with priority to NARA), and create new playgrounds using both public and private funds.
Priority: 
2nd Highest
Timing: 
Medium-Term (complete by 2020)
Primary Inventory Element: 
Open Space
Capital?: 
Yes
Lead Owner: 
Recreation Commission<i> </i>
Recreation Department<i> </i>
Other Owners: 
Citizens and citizen groups
Finance Committee
Planning Board
Planning Department
Selectmen

Playground for young children

Action Item 4.2.1.2: Playground for young children

Improve a playground to include facilities suitable for young children
Timing: 
Medium-Term (complete by 2020)
Capital?: 
Yes
Primary Inventory Element: 
Open Space
Lead Owner: 
Recreation Commission<i> </i>
Recreation Department<i> </i>
Other Owners: 
Citizens and citizen groups
Open Space Committee
Selectmen

Improve playground and park amenities

Action Item 4.2.1.3: Improve playground and park amenities

Add shade trees, benches, and other amenities at existing parks and playgrounds.
Timing: 
Medium-Term (complete by 2020)
Primary Inventory Element: 
Open Space
Lead Owner: 
Recreation Commission<i> </i>
Recreation Department<i> </i>
Other Owners: 
Citizens and citizen groups
School Committees
Tree Warden

Encourage contributions toward construction of playgrounds and/or parks in new developments.

Action Item 4.2.1.4: Encourage contributions toward construction of playgrounds and/or parks in new developments.

Priority: 
2nd Highest
Timing: 
Medium-Term (complete by 2020)
Primary Inventory Element: 
Land Use
Other Inventory Elements: 
Open Space
Lead Owner: 
Planning Board<i> </i>
Selectmen<i> </i>
Other Owners: 
Natural Resources Department
Planning Department
Recreation Commission

Playground committee

Action Item 4.2.1.5: Playground committee

Consider forming a Citizens’ Playground Committee and finding alternative funding sources for maintenance of playground equipment and grounds.
Timing: 
Short-Term (complete by 2015)
Primary Inventory Element: 
Open Space
Lead Owner: 
Recreation Commission<i> </i>
Other Owners: 
Citizens and citizen groups
Recreation Department
Selectmen

Make play areas accessible

Action Item 4.2.1.6: Make play areas accessible

Ensure that parks, playgrounds, and playing fields are wheelchair accessible to the extent practicable.
Timing: 
Medium-Term (complete by 2020)
Primary Inventory Element: 
Open Space
Lead Owner: 
Recreation Department<i> </i>
Other Owners: 
Commission on Disabilities

Create and maintain conservation lands

Strategy 4.2.2: Create and maintain conservation lands

Maintain conservation lands

Action Item 4.2.2.1: Maintain conservation lands

Continue the work of maintaining the Town conservation lands.
Timing: 
Ongoing (existing actions or efforts to be continued and expanded)
Primary Inventory Element: 
Facilities
Other Inventory Elements: 
Natural Resources
Open Space
Sustainability
Lead Owner: 
Land Stewardship Committee<i> </i>
Other Owners: 
Conservation Commission
Natural Resources Department

New conservation lands with new development

Action Item 4.2.2.2: New conservation lands with new development

Encourage the creation of conservation lands associated with new housing development, including but not limited to situations where cluster zoning provisions are applicable.
Priority: 
Highest
Timing: 
New Sustained Action (start by 2015 and continue through 2030)
Primary Inventory Element: 
Land Use
Other Inventory Elements: 
Natural Resources
Open Space
Lead Owner: 
Planning Board<i> </i>
Selectmen<i> </i>
Other Owners: 
Natural Resources Department
Planning Department

Private and public funding mix for conservation lands

Action Item 4.2.2.3: Private and public funding mix for conservation lands

Implement the recommendations of the OSRP with respect to the maintenance of conservation lands, including trails, using a combination of public funds and private fundraising.1
  • 1. Explore the use of a combination of public and private funds for maintenance of conservation land, as recommended in the OSRP
Timing: 
Short-Term (complete by 2015)
Primary Inventory Element: 
Open Space
Other Inventory Elements: 
Natural Resources
Lead Owner: 
Natural Resources Department <i></i>
Other Owners: 
Citizens and citizen groups
Conservation Commission
Land Stewardship Committee
Selectmen

Increase opportunities for team sports

Strategy 4.2.3: Increase opportunities for team sports

Ensure that playing fields are available to both youth leagues and adult leagues.

Action Item 4.2.3.1: Ensure that playing fields are available to both youth leagues and adult leagues.

Timing: 
Short-Term (complete by 2015)
Primary Inventory Element: 
Open Space
Lead Owner: 
Recreation Department<i> </i>
Other Owners: 
Recreation Commission

Explore methods to maximize the use of existing playing fields and create new playing fields.

Action Item 4.2.3.2: Explore methods to maximize the use of existing playing fields and create new playing fields.

Priority: 
2nd Highest
Timing: 
Ongoing (existing actions or efforts to be continued and expanded)
Capital?: 
Yes
Primary Inventory Element: 
Open Space
Lead Owner: 
Citizens and citizen groups<i> </i>
Recreation Commission<i> </i>
School Committees<i> </i>
Other Owners: 
Recreation Department
Selectmen

Non-motorized access to open space

Action Item 4.2.4: Non-motorized access to open space

Improve walking and biking access to open space resources.
Timing: 
Long-Term (complete by 2030)
Primary Inventory Element: 
Transportation
Other Inventory Elements: 
Open Space
Facilities
Lead Owner: 
Sidewalk Committee<i> </i>
Other Owners: 
Engineering Department
Highway Department
Land Stewardship Committee
Recreation Department

Support additional cultural activities

Objective 4.3: Support additional cultural activities

Non-commercial movie showings

Action Item 4.3.1: Non-commercial movie showings

Create a non-commercial showing of regularly scheduled movies at one or more appropriate locations.1
  • 1. Admission to films would have to be free to avoid the costs of commercial screening of copyrighted films.
Timing: 
Medium-Term (complete by 2020)
Primary Inventory Element: 
Cultural Resources
Lead Owner: 
Recreation Commission<i> </i>
Other Owners: 
Citizens and citizen groups
Council on Aging
Recreation Department

Coordination for more multi-age activities

Action Item 4.3.2: Coordination for more multi-age activities

Increase the coordination between the Acton Memorial Library, the West Acton Citizen’s Library, and the Council on Aging. Continue to support programming geared to different age groups (particularly children and seniors).
Timing: 
Short-Term (complete by 2015)
Primary Inventory Element: 
Facilities
Lead Owner: 
Memorial Library<i> </i>
Other Owners: 
Citizens and citizen groups
Council on Aging
Recreation Department
School Committees
West Acton Citizens' Library
Ripe?: 
Yes

Programs to connect those with shared interests

Action Item 4.3.3: Programs to connect those with shared interests

Continue to offer a wide range of community education / recreation programs that reflect the interests of Acton residents. Promote connections among participants through shared interests.
Timing: 
Ongoing (existing actions or efforts to be continued and expanded)
Primary Inventory Element: 
Facilities
Other Inventory Elements: 
Open Space
Lead Owner: 
Community Education<i> </i>
Recreation Commission<i> </i>
Other Owners: 
Citizens and citizen groups
School Committees

Support cultural activities via publicity and space

Action Item 4.3.4: Support cultural activities via publicity and space

Support the efforts of the Acton Boxborough Cultural Council and private organizations to provide local opportunities and publicity for theater, concerts, dance, and multi-cultural events and celebrations. Make Acton’s public venues available when appropriate and support the dissemination of information regarding these as possible (e.g. post on town website).
Timing: 
Ongoing (existing actions or efforts to be continued and expanded)
Primary Inventory Element: 
Cultural Resources
Other Owners: 
Citizens and citizen groups
Council on Aging
Information Technology Department
Memorial Library
Municipal Properties
School Committees

Support expanding private fundraising efforts for cultural events.

Action Item 4.3.5: Support expanding private fundraising efforts for cultural events.

Timing: 
Ongoing (existing actions or efforts to be continued and expanded)
Primary Inventory Element: 
Cultural Resources
Lead Owner: 
Acton Boxborough Cultural Council<i> </i>
Other Owners: 
Selectmen
Influence?: 
Yes