Duck Pond Park had its official grand opening Oct 15. Hercules residents now have a new recreational space.
According to Hercules Senior Project Manager Greg Dwyer, Duck Pond Park, which is located near the intersection of Sycamore Ave. and Willet St., was built to complement Frog Pad Park, the children’s park across the street.
Duck Pond Park was slated to open six to seven months after construction began July 2010, but due to a long rainy season, delays in the completion of a traffic study and delays in construction, the opening of the park was pushed to this month.
Park amenities include a bocce ball court, horse shoe pits, a picnic area, walking trails, a memorial tree grove and a gazebo, all spread out over three acres, as stated in the Hercules Patch article Duck Pond Park Slated to Open this Fall. The park is located in the Promenade residential area.
Prior to construction, an Environmental Impact Report was conducted on the surrounding area as part of the City of Hercules’ General Plan and in compliance with land regulations. The park was purposely designed to be 25 feet from the pond, in the hopes that construction would not disturb the pond.
“Ultimately the pond and its buffer were not disturbed as they were not in the project’s limit of work,” Dwyer said in an email interview. “The pond was technically outside the project area.”
According to Dwyer, about 130 new trees replaced approximately 100 eucalyptus trees from the park’s original hillside landscape after the eucalyptus trees that were damaged from fire were removed and left existing trees with compromised root systems. A city-hired arborist then deemed these existing trees unsafe, which is why they had to be cut down.
The park is owned by the City of Hercules and cost approximately $1.6 million to build. The money came from the Parks and Recreation Department’s impact fees, which are used for improvement and building projects.
The park was jointly constructed by D.R. Lemings, Carone Construction, McNabb Construction and ValleyCrest Landscape Development.
“I hope that people appreciate and enjoy [the park] and take pride it in,” Dwyer said.