Dreaming Big for Hyatt Park

The City of Hyattsville, Maryland  is looking to enhance Hyatt Park, one of the many open space amenities in the city.  NDC is leading the community design process to gather resident’s insights and ideas and translate them into a conceptual plan. Currently Hyatt Park is home to a small playground and a community garden, but after a community visioning session on January 9th, we learned that many participants have larger visions for the space.

Residents and elected officials braced the cold to participate in a set of activities designed to foster creative and collaborative dialogue…. and get to know their neighbors in the process.

In a former bank building, directly across the street from the park that is soon to be the new headquarters for the City of Hyattsville Police Department, residents brainstormed and weighed options, considered materials, amenities and activities that were most important.

Around the old teller box in the room, flip charts prompted responses to some real world and ‘wacky’ scenarios such as:

“What would Hyatt Park look like… 

• if Dr. Seuss was the Director of Parks and Recreation?

• if it was a great place to picnic?

• if Yayoi Kusama designed the park?

• if your kid wanted to throw his birthday there?

• during the best ever Summer Jam? (a series of concerts hosted by the city)

• if WALL-E took over the world?”

Soon, post-it notes littered the pages, suggestions ranging from the more inspired ‘rainbow path/crosswalk’ and ‘concert stage,’  to the more practical ‘shade trees’, ‘bathroom facilities’ and more.

This activity was designed to prompt participants to think both realistically as well as ‘outside the box and help the NDC design team understand the big ideas that people have for Hyatt Park. The next order of business is to dive into the many responses received, draw out themes and priorities, and create a conceptual plan that captures the creative visions that so many have for the space.The public was also encouraged to submit input for the park design via Speak Up HVL, the City of Hyattsville’s innovative online community engagement portal.  See the ‘Hyatt Park Wishlist’ here

Thank you to everyone who joyfully and intentionally participated!  Keep track of NDC’s social media feeds to see when we release a set of conceptual plans for feedback!