Grass Valley looks to fund new park, improvements to Condon Park |

Grass Valley looks to fund new park, improvements to Condon Park

Grass Valley’s city council on Tuesday gave the go-ahead for staff to pursue $17 million in grant funding to improve its parks.

According to Community Services Analyst Zac Quentmeyer, California has $255 million available this year in Statewide Park Development and Community Revitalization Program grants.

The grants are intended to create new parks and new recreation opportunities in critically underserved communities across California. Qualifying project sites require less than 3 acres of park space per 1,000 residents, and a community median average household income below $51,026 within a half-mile radius, Quentmeyer said.

“We can ask for up to $8.5 million per application,” he said.

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A major component of the grant application process is community involvement in the selection and design of the project features, Quentmeyer said, adding that the city conducted several workshops this spring to get feedback.

Staff identified two project sites that will offer the most competitive applications based on grant scoring criteria and meet the identified community needs, he said. The grant application due date is Aug. 5, with award announcements expected by the end of the year.

The first application will be for a brand-new park on 31 acres off Brunswick Road, between the new Timberwood Estates and the proposed first phase of the Loma Rica development. The current owner has agreed to sell the property to the city at or below fair market value if the project is awarded, Quentmeyer said. The project will include site prep — grading, mastication and selective tree removal — installation of basic infrastructure — utilities, roads, parking lot and restrooms — and installation of recreation features including a multi-use field, trails, playground and basketball court.

The second application would be for improving and expanding Condon Park, and would include building on the current Joint Use Facility Agreement with the Grass Valley School District to include improvements on Scotten and Lyman Gilmore School properties. The improved portions of the school sites will essentially become part of Condon Park when school is out of session, Quentmeyer said. Scotten School improvements would include rehabbing the grass field and replacing existing playground equipment. Lyman Gilmore improvements would include new obstacle course style exercise/play equipment and the installation of a new restroom next to the turf field.

Improvements to Condon Park itself would include a bike pump track — a circuit of rollers, banked turns and features designed to be ridden completely by riders “pumping” up and down instead of pedaling or pushing. It also would feature a beginners skate park and splash pad, as well as expanding the disc golf course, replacing the existing restroom and snack shack and adjusting the alignment of both baseball fields.

Contact reporter Liz Kellar at 530-477-4236 or by email at

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