California State Parks Grants $8.5 Million to City of Redding for Brand-New Park

The City of Redding announced today that it has received a California State Parks Grant in the amount of $8.5 Million to build a brand new park at 950 Lake Boulevard in Redding. This funding is part of Governor Gavin Newsom’s “Outdoors for All” initiative, which has awarded a total of $548.3 million to expand park access to 112 communities throughout the state. A total of 468 applications were received for this grant, representing $2.42 Billion in requests. 

“To be one of the communities awarded this grant speaks to Redding’s need for a City-owned community center and fills the gap in park facilities in this area,”  says Community Services Director Kim Niemer. “It also highlights the fantastic efforts of City of Redding staff in securing outside funding for local community needs.”

With this Proposition 68 Park Grant funding, The City of Redding will build the 10.5 acre Panorama Park including a 20,000 square foot recreation facility,  addressing Redding’s  long-standing need for a community center and a park in the northwest quadrant of the city, simultaneously.

Historically, City-based recreation programs have relied on gym space owned by other local entities, but this recreation center will serve as the first gymnasium and community center of its kind for the City of Redding. The center will include basketball courts, classroom space, a reception area, restrooms and storage in a larger park setting with open fields, trails, landscaping, a playground, a dog park, lighted walkways and parking. 

In October of 2020, the application was developed based on specific criteria that made the location a particularly desirable one according to the grant’s requirements. That step would help solidify this win for Redding that has been more than two decades in the making. This is the second grant from this program earned by the City of Redding, the first of which funded the Caldwell Park Expansion Project currently underway.  

Several public meetings and a survey were held to gather community input on a new Panorama Park. This process provided the City with insight from people who live in the neighborhood – from kids to retirees. The enthusiasm shown was highlighted in a video submitted with the grant application. All of this contributed to a funded project!  

This application was a success because the area has no other parks, the neighborhood has a mix of incomes, and there is a tremendous need for a gym space in Redding.

“This space will provide consistency for kids – a place for them to put down roots and feel a sense of community in their neighborhood,” says Travis Menne, Community Project Manager for the City of Redding.  “It gets them out of the heat during summer months and out of the rain during the fall and winter and ensures that they always have a resource in the Redding Recreation staff. This is an investment in a part of town that has long needed and deserved it – a chance for generations of families to engage in healthy, positive activities and build lasting memories.” 

Jenny Moore, Recreation Supervisor with the City of Redding, helped to write the grant that brought this park to fruition for the Redding Community. Moore says that telling a community’s story is a big step in the process of getting a grant application like this one noticed in the wake of hundreds of submissions.   

“One of the most rewarding parts of putting these applications together is that we get a chance to tell a group of people who aren’t familiar with our city what our values are,” says Moore. “We get to share a bit about our city with people who have never been here and that can truly help to put a community like Redding on the map.”

While the environmental permitting is already complete, the process of designing the community center is expected to take at least a year. Groundbreaking at the Panorama Park site is anticipated in 2024.  

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