“ASK RIP” Answers to Your Parks Questions
Rip Robertson is the first Parks and Recreation Director for the City of Tucker. He takes the job with years of experience in Parks and Rec, as well as Public Works. Rip is a former Military Intelligence Analyst for the U.S. Army and is active with the Army Reserve.
Sarah Suhar – I was wondering if there are any plans to develop a dog park for Tucker residents in the near future? I think the city and its residents would hugely benefit from this and would love to see this happen for our new city.
Sarah, one of the things folks will find out as they get to know me is that I’m a dog lover just like you. And, just like you, my wife and I have to travel to other communities to take our dog to the dog park.
As I’ve stated before, one of the first big projects for our Parks & Recreation Department will be a Parks & Rec master plan. That’s where those types of issues will be discussed by residents and other stakeholders in the community. You can expect to see news about public forums and opportunities to provide input on the master plan in early 2018.
I will tell you there are several challenges as we look at adding park amenities. The biggest challenge with installing a dog park is finding the right location. So we will be seeking input on where in the City people would most like to see a dog park.
Steve Hagan – As we move toward developing a Parks master plan, do you believe the goal of establishing a neighborhood park or larger park of some description (natural area, ball field, tot lot, pool, etc.) within a 10- or 15-minute walk of all residents as promoted by the Trust for Public Lands a worthy one for Tucker or would you favor some other goal?
Steve, that’s not just the goal of the Trust for Public Lands, it’s also a National Recreation and Park Association standard. In an urban environment where land is precious, those goals are worth striving for, but they’re sometimes not very easily obtained. That said, we are certainly going to do all we can to meet those guidelines. Our master plan process will give us a much better idea of what we can and cannot do in that regard.
Robert Matthews – I’ve lived just outside Tucker for 18 years and still don’t know the location of any Tucker city parks. Will you publish a map showing where (and what) they are?
Robert, it’s funny you ask that. Our GIS Department has just published a new online feature to help folks inside and outside of Tucker explore our parks. It’s an application called “Tucker Outdoors” and it allows the user to search parks by different amenities. Want to know which parks have soccer fields? Looking for a picnic shelter? Searching for a great hiking trail? You can find it all on our homepage with “Tucker Outdoors”.
Additionally, as we assume responsibility for our Parks & Recreation from DeKalb County, we will be doing other marketing of all our parks. We want to make sure that everyone knows what great outdoor options we have here in Tucker and about the improvements we’re making to those parks.
Lori D. Jones – Will the Tucker Rec Center continue to offer day camps for children during school breaks and summers?
Absolutely. There are no plans to change any of the programming currently being offered at the Rec Center. Understanding how important Tucker Rec is to the community, our intention is to build upon and improve the existing programming.