A Message from Mayor Rich Walker
Teamwork is something you hear a lot about, almost to the point of it being a cliché. But cliché or not, it’s at the foundation of most of what we do.
The city government is no different. As the Mayor of the City of Parkland. I preside over city commission meetings—a team of elected officials making decisions for the City. Officials are elected by a team of residents. And most of the decisions we make are based on information, leg work, or data provided to us by a team of dedicated City staff members who often work long hours.
The city commission also relies on information from the City’s Community Advisory Board, Parks and Recreation Advisory Board, and Planning and Zoning Advisory Board. Each of these Boards is a team of resident volunteers. And, of course, we rely on information directly from residents, whether shared in the public comment segment of a City Commission meeting or in outreach to a member of the City Commission. That is why I share my email address and cellphone number at the end of each of these columns. All members of our city commission love hearing from our residents.
Over the past few years, our teamwork has proven particularly fruitful. We have maintained additional School Resource Deputies in Broward County Public Schools located in Parkland. We are in the throes of a branding initiative to deliver our City its first official logo, color scheme, and tagline. This effort has relied heavily on resident input through focus groups, one-on-one interviews, and a citywide survey. In fact, the “data” gathered from this outreach is used in the development of the creative elements of the branding process.
We have also finalized the expansion of Covered Bridge Park. Though intentionally limited, there is now parking for Covered Bridge Park for the first time. Our teamwork enabled us to transform a thickly wooded area overrun by exotic invasive vegetative species into a relaxing, passive area with meandering pathways, open green space, shaded areas, and a natural play area. We converted natural grass fields to artificial turf to decrease downtime and maximize our field space; we tackled the big project of fixing the drainage issues that plagued fields six through nine at Pine Trails Park—transforming all four into better surfaces with confident draining that decreases downtime and enhances the playing experience. We’ve also added pickleball courts and reconfigured parking at Terramar Park to address both of these growing needs.
I couldn’t be more proud that our team of elected officials has taken on previously unsettled issues like the condition of the roads in Pine Tree Estates, drainage in The Ranches and Ternbridge, and the school boundary matter that has concerned Parkland parents for years. These are big issues—each one a heavy lift on its own—and my fellow members of the City Commission and I are meeting them head on. That kind of teamwork involves a lot of people coming together to move the ball down the field. And the successes we have made and will continue to make me proud to be the Mayor of this team.
If you would like to share your thoughts about teamwork or have questions or comments you’d like to share with me, I would love to hear from you. I can be reached via email at firstname.lastname@example.org or 973-390-1453.
Of course, I am frequently available monthly at Parkland businesses and love to talk with residents there. I encourage you to visit the City’s website cityofparkland.org and click on the social media icon that you prefer to stay informed on events and helpful information.
City of Parkland, Florida
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