Julian Feild Park is the oldest park in Mansfield, built in 1960 and named after one of our city's founding fathers. With that historic significance in mind, the park was selected as the location for a future Veterans Memorial.
The project originated during discussions in a City Council Public Memorials Sub-Committee meeting. Next, a group of residents formed a nonprofit organization to raise the funds to build a permanent recognition for local veterans. In Spring 2021, the City joined forces with the volunteers to help oversee the project and funding, which will most likely come from a future bond election.
For the last few months, all parties have been working with a designer to develop concepts for the space. Each meeting has included detailed discussion and brainstorming to ensure all ideas were heard and included. On August 9, Director of Community Services Matt Young shared the results of that collaboration thus far with City Council.
The concept includes a large event plaza with terraced seating for guests. The back of the plaza will include large flags overlooking a pond, which will be constructed from the existing drainage creek. The layout of the plaza and water feature is designed to create a stunning backdrop for the memorial.
A separate memorial plaza will be nestled against the large shade trees in the park. This plaza will include a large pavilion for special events and large gatherings, a memorial wall, and an open plaza with large granite pylons recognizing each military branch. Branching off the plaza is a paved trail that winds through the woods of the entire 8-acre park with smaller spaces for more private, quiet remembrance.
Roadwork completed last year improved the parking lot along Magnolia Street, but the draft master plan concept shows an additional 22 parking spaces to be added in a future expansion. The close proximity to City Hall was a key factor in the site selection, as it offers ample overflow parking for large events.
Serenity Gardens is a unique xeriscape garden that was added to Julian Feild Park in 2002 as a designated memorial site for quiet reflection. That space will get updates and improvements with the Veterans Memorial project, ensuring all existing memorials will be preserved. Another exciting upgrade planned as part of the renovations is the addition of restrooms, a welcome bonus for both daily visitors and special event guests.
Regular park guests will notice the designs are missing something--the concept calls for removing the existing playground to gain the necessary space for the memorial. The equipment, installed in 2016, is still in great condition and will be relocated to James McKnight Park West, located just two blocks away.
The City Council Public Memorials Sub-Committee and Mansfield Veterans Memorial Foundation representatives all enthusiastically approved the concept at the most recent meeting. Those concepts will be presented to the public for feedback at an upcoming open meeting at 6:30 p.m. on Tuesday, Aug. 31 at City Hall. Residents are invited to view the drawings up close, hear from the architect and staff, and share feedback. Comments may also be submitted to email@example.com.
At this time there is no funding allotted or timeline set for the completion of the Veterans Memorial. The final concept will be submitted for consideration as part of the upcoming bond package. A committee of residents is set to review all possible projects and select the highest priority items. Mansfield voters will have the opportunity to approve funding for the projects they support in the May 2022 election. If approved, the Veterans Memorial will then move forward with final design and construction.
For questions regarding this or other park projects, please contact firstname.lastname@example.org. Watch our Project Tracker page for future updates, and sign up for email alerts to receive notifications as work progresses.