The city of Brookhaven is requesting virtual public input for the designs of a new community center at Murphey Candler Park.

The community center is part of the Parks Bond Capital Improvement Program, which was approved in a referendum in November 2018 and dedicates $40 million to Brookhaven park and facility improvements.

The city has budgeted $8.98 million for Murphey Candler Park improvements, including parking updates, a boardwalk and trail renovations. The budget for the community building is $1.25 million. The park is located at 1551 W Nancy Creek Drive.

The Murphey Candler Park map shows proposed improvements to the area, including the new community center at the southwest corner of the lake. (city of Brookhaven)

Because of the COVID-19 pandemic, the city is asking for virtual input to influence the concept plan for the community center. Leaders of community organizations can request a public input toolkit by emailing rkeefer@CPLteam.com.

Residents not affiliated with specific organizations can send comments or feedback to ParksFeedback@BrookhavenGA.gov.

The public input toolkits are being managed by Brookhaven’s design firm, Clark Patterson Lee.

“The purpose of the toolkit is to provide an opportunity for community leaders to be directly involved in the input process,” Brookhaven spokesperson Burke Brennan said in an email.

The toolkit allows organizational leaders to host virtual, structured input meetings to see what features their members would like to see at the center. The toolkit has two exercises for input, one about what types of programming people want, such as dance lessons or senior activities, and the second about what type of architectural features they want, such as small-group rooms or a coffee bar.

The deadline for submitting the public input toolkits is July 31.

The city will also host a virtual open house sometime in August and an in-person open house sometime in September to continue the public input, according to a timeline about upcoming public outreach for the community center.

The city and project consultants will create a conceptual design using the public feedback and present it to the mayor and council sometime after September, according to the timeline.

The city also held pop-up events for public input at the Coward Family YMCA and Murphey Candler Park baseball fields and had an online survey that ran from December 2019 to March 2020.

The city moved forward with updates to parks through the early stages of the COVID-19 pandemic, including the completing shoreline restoration at Murphey Candler Lake and approving a Blackburn Park parking lot improvement project.

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