PENSACOLA, Fla. (WKRG) — Barricades, chains and signs will remain up at the Bay Bluffs Park on Scenic Highway in Pensacola.
After closing the park temporarily in March, Mayor D.C. Reeves announced Tuesday that the park will be closed indefinitely, and due to structural concerns, parts of it will need to be demolished.
“No one signs up to be mayor to close parks and close community centers,” Reeves said. “That’s not what I want to do. That’s certainly not fun news to deliver to citizens who pay taxes in order to use these amenities.”
Reeves said the park needs at least an estimated $1 million in repairs, which is something he said is not in the budget.
He said a lack of maintenance of the park over the years has caused the structural issues at the park, and safety concerns are at top of mind.
“The buck stops at public safety,” Reeves said. “People’s children and the citizens of this community being unsafe at one of these parks. I think logic has to prevail at some point; we just have to say ‘hey’ we can’t really speak for the lack of maintenance generationally that’s happened that got us here. All we can do is make sure that we put that the structure in place as we get things online and we have new amenities, amenities that are starting to age, that we make sure that we have a better plan in place to get as much life out of them as we can.”
Reeves said the city wants to replace the existing park, but there’s no word on when that will happen.
“We aren’t saying the we’re closing it forever, but we’ve got to get our feet back under us and get a real understanding of not only what we’re gonna put in but also as we continue to move forward making sure we’re maintaining the things we have,” Reeves said.