Work proceeds on Echo Lake Park

Tuesday, September 2, 2014

Work is proceeding rapidly with the refurbishment of Echo Lake Park at N 200th and Ashworth along the Interurban Trail.

The design and list of things to do was created by Maureen Colaizzi of the Shoreline Parks Department, with input from the Echo Lake Neighborhood Association.

Photos by Jeanne Monger

Looking north, the posts mark the popular fishing beach. The state regularly stocks the lake, which also makes it a popular nesting site for cormorants. The concrete circles will hold picnic tables.

Previous work on the park removed half of the tiny beach and left a row of jagged stones. This restores some of the beach and provides a smooth wall for people who want to sit by the water.

The grassy area in the park had become very uneven and bumpy. Drainage was poor and the land was often swampy. The whole area is being rebuilt for proper drainage and even footing.

The park now will have a playground for small children. The tree has been protected as well as the art piece.

Turtles live in the south end of the lake - now the north end has its own turtle.

Improvements include handicapped accessible, porous asphalt pathway connections, improved handicapped accessible beach access, a tot play structure with safety surfacing, a re-graded/seeded open lawn area, irrigation system, benches, picnic tables, bike racks, a barbecue grill, and renovations to the existing restroom (one unisex stall design). 

The park should open in October 2014.


Anonymous,  September 3, 2014 at 5:45 AM  

While I appreciate all the work to make the park nicer, I still won't let my kids play there until the city and police department take care of the drug dealer who sits in the parking lot most days. It is appalling that the police know who he is and what he is doing there but won't do anything about it. Especially considering it is a bus stop for the middle and high schools.

Anonymous,  September 3, 2014 at 11:39 AM  

Is it safe to go in the water at that lake? I always thought it was a pond full of runoff from the streets -

DKH,  September 3, 2014 at 11:43 AM  

The lake is fed by three streams, but it does get run off from Aurora. It used to get run off from higher properties but the redevelopment of Gateway Plaza and Sky Nursery solved that problem. As soon as Aurora is complete, the run off will be filtered before it reaches the lake. The big issue now with the lake is the occasional toxic algae bloom.

Anonymous,  September 3, 2014 at 12:23 PM  

the lake has always been tested for water quality in the past. I expect that has continued.

DKH,  September 3, 2014 at 3:06 PM  

The testing has continued and the City lets the Shoreline Area News know the results so we can notify our readers of any issues.

Anonymous,  September 4, 2014 at 3:12 AM  

Beware, the bathroom at the park is full of needles and druggies. I stopped there on a bike ride and the smell of filth, drug needles and filth on the floor made my stomach turn. There was a strange man on the back side of the building and he tried to enter the bathroom as I was in there.

Anonymous,  September 4, 2014 at 8:54 AM  

What drug dealer that sits there most days? I live right by there and can assure you, no drug dealer is sitting there all day, if ever. Please back up your accusations with facts before degrading our community. I realize it's not perfect which is why I'm out there trying to make a positive impact. What are you doing other than fear mongering?

Anonymous,  September 4, 2014 at 6:32 PM  

I always hear people complaining about the druggies on the south Interurban, too. They're there, I guess, but I've never felt threatened, and certainly never been harrassed

Anonymous,  September 4, 2014 at 9:46 PM  

I see a man in a silver pick up parked in the small lot on the corner of Ashworth and 200th St almost every single time I drive by (which is often since I live on Ashworth). I wondered what his deal was, we even named him Steve. I guess I just assumed he was homeless. Is he the dealer the first poster was speaking of? Either way, I do not feel safe around him. Anyone parking their truck packed of stuff at a park all day every day is not up to any good.

My daughters and I occasionally walk down 195th St to the Interurban Trail and then down to the lake. I am certainly looking forward to the improvements but I must agree that the city absolutely HAS to do something about the people who are down there all the time.My nearly 13 year old is always asking if I will let her walk down to the lake by herself and the answer is always a BIG FAT NO WAY. I had to call the cops on a lady down there the other day, she was walking through ranting and raving to herself, obviously some sort of mental problem going on. I just don't feel safe down there, and it's a huge shame,

Anonymous,  September 6, 2014 at 9:07 AM  

I'm sorry you feel that way about the homeless and the mentally ill.

Anonymous,  September 7, 2014 at 10:22 PM  

I live in the neighborhood and I see the man in the silver pickup. I have watched people walk up to him and things exchange hands. Unless you are an ignorant fool, you can easily figure out what is going on there. The crime reports often have drug overdoses in the Echo Lake Park bathrooms listed. It was not this way when I bought my home here over a decade ago. Shortly after they put in the methadone clinic on 165th and Aurora the crime rates have shot up near there and have slowly crept north ever since.

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