Fitness Park:?Not yet

Just because the equipment for the Outdoor Fitness Park at DeFrees Park was installed last week doesn’t mean you can use it.

When installation was complete last week, caution tape was placed around the equipment.

While it isn’t clear who did it, the tape was taken down early this week.

The problem?

Warren City Council approved an agreement at a meeting last week that lays out a procedure that must take place before the fitness park can be opened to the public, and that procedure can’t take place until at least next spring when the project is completed.

City Parks and Recreation Director Mary Ann Nau said on Wednesday that the “city will be covering that equipment… tarping it for the winter.”

She reiterated that the fitness elements at DeFrees Park are not open to the public at this time.

Several steps will have to take place before the park can open.

The agreement states that the Community Mobilization Initiative, the entity comprised of local businesses that has funded the project, will install signage regarding use of the equipment.

Then, “the Outdoor Fitness Park shall be inspected by the Director of the Department of Public Works and the City Engineer and they shall submit their findings to City Council. Once City personnel are satisfied with the surface material and the placement and functionality of the equipment, CMI shall offer the completed Outdoor Fitness Park, as places, to the City as a gift for the benefit of the general public.”

Nau explained that the city’s insurance says that it “has to be in control of care and custody of the area,” with accepting the park and the inspection essential components of that process.

Point seven of the agreement states: “The Outdoor Fitness Park shall not be officially opened until accepted by Warren City Council.”

Once the city is in possession of the park, it will be responsible for maintenance of the park and will receive $5,000 from CMI to help offset maintenance costs for the equipment.