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The Monthly Meeting of the SHNA
The next monthly meeting of the Sam Hughes Neighborhood Association will be held May 17, 2016 at 7:00 PM. Due to the special election, the May meeting will be at the Sam Hughes Elementary School Library.
PLEASE NOTE: Unless otherwise announced, Board Meetings are held the 3rd Tuesday of each month. Look for minutes of recent meetings on the Minutes/Agendas page.
Sam Hughes Maps
Protect Himmel Park
Plant fast growing native trees or Aleppo pines. More trees would be nice. Perhaps mesquites/low water. We lost a lot of trees on the northwest corner awhile back. We use Himmel Park almost every day. We bring our preschool-age children over to play & have a picnic. Our older children also use the library. We used to use the baby pool, but had to stop because it was too expensive and open during the hottest time of the day (1-4). We think more attention should go towards sun safety measures. Shade! Shade! Different hours of operation for pool & reduced or no fee for wading pool.
More native trees, especially around the playgrounds to provide shade for the kids and extend the available play times. I have lived in the S.H. area while raising my daughters and while my grandsons were so pleased to play there also. Both my daughters have favorite trees they climbed as kids and my grandkids have the same experiences with trees & things in the park.
We use Himmel Park for lots of family gatherings of celebrations. Tis like declaring an area a wilderness and then asking, "What to do to improve it." Leave well enough alone! Jacaranda, Mimosifolia, large flowery trees w/easy maintenance, high drought tolerance. Check them out in office building at SW corner of Pima & Swan in courtyard. Replace the eucalyptus trees on the south side, plant new ones where old have died. Desert, native trees. Realize people need the outdoor areas to decompress and relax. Kids need play & sports areas. A neighborhood gem! Need better/more effective/total cover on wading pool, more Shakespeare in the park!
We need more trees or shade sails for the playground areas. Opening the pool for longer dates would also be great. Water features at the playground would also be good.
Nothing on the magnitude of Brandi Fenton Park but some sprays in the sand area would be great. Water the trees you idiots, 20 trees have died in the past 10 yrs. and only 5 new ones have been planted. Take out the grass, the desert shouldn't have any! At the least, consult with water harvester garden designers for "desert-friendly" designs. Dog park enclosure on SE side, otherwise fine as is.
Save the old slide, keep amplified music to a minimum. Police the park for transients. Replace all dead trees. Keep off leash dogs away, too many little kids around for so many dogs. I would like to see small dog area in SE corner. Look at NYC where dog areas are very small. Wish pool were open year around. I love Himmel Park. We used park when our children were small, we are not fit enough to walk there now. We always enjoyed it except for the many dogs.
We love & use the park almost daily. More benches by the play areas would be great. We would love to see recycle cans by the garbage cans. Improved upkeep of grassy areas. Improve basketball courts. Permanent volleyball, horseshoes? Please improve basketball court! The Tucson Blvd. side is a little unsafe for kids, no barrier to street but it is pretty w/o a fence.
More shade trees-mesquite, acacia. Shades over playgrounds so equipment doesn't get hot. Too many dogs off leash in playground areas.
Both playgrounds need more shade. The new east playground's black rubber ground is ridiculous, it gets too hot by April. Please find $$ to keep pool open early, more hours + for more months in the year. Himmel Pool is very pricey for daily use. If there was a way to pay an annual fee and be able to use the pool all the time, I would definitely use it, would recommend this option for area residents.
I don't know what is with the "Hippie Hill" but I think the name & the sign are both very tacky. Shade for picnic tables.
Have pool open more months of year, 3-yr-old son wants a dog park.
Get rid of the transients. We use the playgroundseveral times per week but the equipment is very outdated. I feel the tallmetal slide is unsafe. Playground needs upgrading, like the Reid Parkplaygrounds (they are more modern & safe).
Trees called bottle trees are planted in parking lots (Frys at 22nd) and require little water and are beautifully shaped. Put restrictions on all Indians and transients from drinking alcohol in part of the park, clean south end of park up where the homeless people sleep, do their drugs & alcohol. If the play areas had covers, children could use them during the heat of the day, especially the east play area for younger children. The covers are not that expensive. Preschools & kindergarten play areas have them.
Add off leash area for dogs. Demand that owners of off-leash dogs be corrected & fined. I cannot use my neighborhood park because of the off-leash dogs.
Create an off-leash dog area, or enforce the leash law. Every time I walk my dog in Himmel, I have to avoid loose dogs, and their owners are watching.
Mesquite, eucalyptus east & south of the Play areas for shade in the summer.
Native species trees. More tennis backboards for practice. I don't know if the homeless contribute to crime, but the guys are always there, most often in the oleander on the south side, using that area as a bathroom, as well. It is a vital part of the neighborhood & is heavily used. Can something be done about the transients? If we go to the park and see transients hanging around, we turn around and go home. Trees: AZ ash, hackberry. The park seems to offer a great deal, a picturesque, pleasant place. Nice for a senior like me (age 84)! Fast growing, long-lived shade trees, not more palms.
Add community garden w/green waste composting facility. Collect, compost & apply to garden neighborhood kitchen waste & yard trimmings. Would like to see Himmel as a neighborhood park, not dominated by soccer. Maybe no parking along Treat for games or no games. The homeless sometimes are sleeping on the ground near the library. Could they be taken by the authorities to a proper shelter?
We don't think there are problems w/safety. It is important to us though. Amphitheater: maintain safety. There are few dog leash problems, except for the five at the tennis facility, no big concerns, we like the mix of people-all-even homeless.
Pool: we would really like to see it open through September. Trees: take care of what's there now, replace as needed, native is nice. Park signs: the banners were a waste of money. We love the Hippie Hill sign! Add recycle bins. Problem w/trash left after weekend for dog owners such as chicken bones, rotten meat, etc. Trees, shade, pond w/turtles like at the UofA.
Replace dying trees, more adaptable pines, mesquite, AZ ash, sycamore.We love the vermilion flycatchers, Cooper's hawks, kestrels & phoebes.
I walk thru the park 3 or 4 times weekly & enjoy the energy & activity always going on, whether it is a picnic, kids on play structures, ultimate frisbee games, soccer, or folks with their dogs. Large shade trees near the playground equipment & on the SW side. Add benches, maybe some small bleachers near the most used fields. Add more picnictables on the W side & in the grove S of the library.
Better security to enforce public dope smoking laws. Homeless tend to hang out in oleander bushes smoking away, 50 yds. away from kids/adults playing soccer - any day.
Need to replace trees at W play area. Pool: If it was open on Sundays we would be able to use more. Extend hours & season!! Would love to see 2-4 covered ramadas, additional playground equipment, additional trees & landscaping. How about solar heat for pool to extend season? It would help to understand how the park is currently threatened. Is it overuse, reduction in funds, etc.?
More low-water use trees like mesquite? More trees, shaded areas around peripheries of fields &around picnic areas (W side). Consider paved sidewalk around periphery to promote wheelchair access. Plant trees along streets (drought-tolerant species) to provide a unified character to neighborhood. It is a great park but the fields are used to capacity & parking is difficult for pool & library uses. I would use pool if lap lanes were available in the evening. Large open space on W side is fabulous. More shade at pool. Dogs off leash are a continuing problem. Better toilet facilities. Outlaw all dirt leaf blowers.
Make shaded pavilion areas. Have the pool open through Sept/Oct & open again in early May. Build dog park area. Safety in the park is as good as anywhere. More shade trees for summertime day use on W side. Needs big trees or shade structures over swings/play structures. Get rid of big metal slide. Pool hours (especially baby pool) are too short. Removal of BBQ grills. Perfect as is, just invest in keeping facilities & vegetation in good condition.
Also, really wish pool opened earlier in year/closed later in year, especially weekends, not just school vacation. Improve, refurbish native exercise course. Keeping park as clean as possible. Grass fields are full of wide variety of weeds. Fields are in poor condition. We need this space in mid-town. Desert adapted shade trees would be appropriate.
Keep restrooms open, more signs about dogs being off leash. There are days when there are 20 dogs running around. Seems well used now w/good mix of sites & activities. I would like to see a more imaginative landscape but love what is there and am grateful for it. Shade & fruit trees.
Too many bums hanging around. Keep areas clear and open.
Field lights for night use of existing fields.
Still see too many dogs not leashed. If there are budget cuts on maintenance, let the neighbors help. You've done a great job making improvements. No unleashed dogs, better night-lights. Pool hours only during the worst periods, sun exposure is bad policy. How about early &/or evening hours instead?
Also I remember evening concerts & plays in the amphitheater (Kite Hill/"Hippie" Hill).
Restore a performance gazebo or at least a screen framework. See if school level groups would use the space. Recent events have been good.
The Solar Rock Festival was nice. More festivals or maybe summer movie nights in the park. The pool can have activities too, water aerobics & water ballet classes on hours not commonly used. Also maybe encircle park with a paved area for roller blading.
Himmel Park at this time seems to have a good balance of activity; however, overloading the park with more would overburden it. It was sad to see the tall trees along Tucson Blvd. and 1st St. taken down. It would be great if they could be replaced. We live directly on the east side of the park and we really experience problems when soccer is in season. People park in or block our driveways. If more multi-use fields are developed, I'm concerned we'll have even more problems. Perhaps lights on fields so park can be used in the evenings safely; some play structures for older kids.
We might use the pool if it were modernized. I miss the big, sweet-smelling pine trees that were there in the beginning. I'd like to donate my next living Christmas tree. Pool is not open often enough for our use. Maybe it might make more sense to limit it to children usage, as the pool is not that large. May be good for swim classes, lifeguard classes, etc.
It seems like some of the trees have died. They should be replaced with similar trees. I love it that you can walk through fallen leaves in the fall, so deciduous trees would be nice. Maybe a few native trees for water savings. Also more shade trees around the western play area would be good. I don't think the park needs a lot of changing. It's just important to keep it well maintained.
It would be nice if it had a walking/jogging path around the perimeter. Trees: anything tall & shady. Replace old, dying trees at NW corner. I think the pool should have a "splash pad" like the one at Brandi Fenton Park.
More things for the kids; more things for the old folks. More trees, more plays in the amphitheater, more Shakespeare, move the homeless out of the park. I would like an area for exercise for seniors with perhaps an instructor. As a senior I have had no need to use the park, but believe it is of much value to the neighborhood. Don't develop it more. It's good the way it is, not good, excellent! I walk in the park 4 hrs. a week, need soft surface and love seeing the birds that come there, enjoy seeing the dogs and later in the day games & play.
Keep open space. Don't gentrify or develop. Keep the community feeling of the park, great neighborhood park!
I think that there should be more playground facilities. Children enjoy playing & not just standing around. I would love to see park benches along the main path, like a real park! Our children are young adults now and have used the park since toddlers, still meet friends there, needs to be available for families, teens, young adults and older. Keep it the same, open pool all year for adult lap swim, okay to charge a higher pool fee to cover heating.
Trees in SW picnic area are dying. Plant new trees to eventually replace. Current trees have not been well cared for by Parks & Rec. Some are dying because they have been girded by maintenance crew.
Do what it takes to protect all of Himmel Park. It is our neighborhood's most valuable resource. Expand basketball facilities. We have 42 years worth of wonderful memories of birthday parties, swimming, jogging, soccer games & many, many picnics. It is also a positive link between Sam Hughes & UofA students. It is the center of good living in our neighborhood. The Lantana plants around the library are overgrown & unattractive. The drip system floods the area. Maintain the tennis courts & bathrooms better. Maintaining current fields for ultimate frisbee is very important.
Hippie Hill is special & needs protecting. Water harvesting considerations for drainage at tennis courts & buildings. Thank "plaza", maintain it, or improve it, but keep it. Replace non-native trees with native types. Anything that provides roosting areas for birds and bats. Prefer large trees that are drought tolerant. Trim dead limbs on established trees. Add more dog poo bag stations, maybe on the north side.
Prevent any add'l encroachment of open areas by single purpose uses. Keep perimeter (especially 1st St.) free of obstacles for people jogging/walking (e.g. support wires for power lines are dangerous). Enforce on-leash policy, fewer dogs off-leash would be safer, maybe some reminder signs? A few more ramadas for picnics & small parties would be nice. Add ramadas, play equipment, shade trees at play areas. I use the fields at least once per week as well as run perimeter 3x per week.
Love the park as is, just a few more trees around the outside would be nice, don't lose any field space. More tables/benches for picnics. We've walked around & through H.P. for 40 years & enjoy watching all the activity & the restful green spaces. It would be nice to:
No more playing fields for kids. Let's dedicate some of the park to senior citizens. How about paths flanked by shade trees & an occasional bench? More trees or shade structures. Pool especially needs shade. Improve playground facility on west side, better climbing/slides, open/shaded play structure.
Please petition to resurface tennis courts, cannot remember last time they were resurfaced. They are slippery & bumpy, making them hazardous to play. The park was much nicer & friendlier when there was not so much organized sports; it should be simply a neighborhood park like in the old days. Please have the extra tall slide removed, it's so dangerous! More shaded play areas for kids & waiting adults. Preferably native, cottonwood, mesquite, sycamore trees. MEMORY: We watched the fireworks on 4th of July for years from H.P. when the UofA handled them. I think adding more olive trees, they are very aesthetic and add a lot of shade, perfect for Tucson sun.
A full court BB court should be added. 24/7 security patrols. There are shady things going on in the park "after hours", park should be monitored. It's sad to think you may need a chain link fence & lock it at sundown. It's a wonderful place to walk and picnic and for children to play. We like all kinds of trees, green grass, but some owners of dogs don't clean after them. It looks & smells badly. Maybe it's possible to issue some rules about that. I want to feel certain that it will remain a safe place for all of us to visit & enjoy! This park is perfect. We love the families & children using it. It is great that people can walk their dogs there. Instead of changing it, please add more parks like it in other Tucson neighborhoods.
Need covered verandas, shade structures & trees. Eliminate vagrancy. Neighborhood patrols, strict enforcement of rules, no sleeping in or near the park, more police presence. How about a community vegetable/flower/native plant garden, an educational garden, or even native tree garden? Perhaps this could be a project done in partnership with nearby schools? Could include water harvesting from the roof of the library. It seems the large trees are slowly dying. I know indigenous trees are more sensible but big eucalyptus & Aleppo pines add some height. Don't tear up what is already there in terms of trees, tables, etc. I am not concerned with park safety, even at night, am concerned that I want it to stay that way. Trees only if they don't require much water, but not something thorny either.
Shade area over play equipment. Not those highly allergic mesquite, mulberry, olive but elms/ash--good shade. Pool open longer. Coffee drink stand. Outdoor movies & theater. Children's water play area, better seating areas & shade. Yes to developing more fields if it will help to protect other historic resources around the city.
Keep it green and natural. Don't turn it into a crazy quilt of predetermined uses. There are already ample multi-use fields & sports areas. No more structures or ramadas. Large trees make natural ramadas. Expanded playground facility on west side.
Keep up maintenance to encourage continued use; the more people use it, the safer it is. Dogs--always an issue when they run free. Please control bongo drum playing. Desperately need shade structures, trees & canopy structures. Because there is no shade, school children huddle under small climbing structure and under the slide. We would be more likely to use Himmel pool if it were open on Sundays. More shade trees along western border all supported by a complete network of "swales & basins" which capture rain & irrigation runoff and protect public park from wind and intense sun days. No more eucalyptus, fruit trees instead, set aside an unleashed dog yard.
Sometimes homeless? Hanging out in oleanders on S side of park. More shade trees near large slide. How about a large shade cover/canopy? Possibly plant Chilean mesquites, fastest growing, no thorns, great shade. Place in center of park area & all around. Lights would be nice at soccer fields. Keep the pool open year round, specially lap swimming.
Need new trees to replace dying ones. Is there any way to deep water the old trees? Provide walking/running surface around perimeter of park. Need more restrooms near big playing field. Have police check for noisy young adults running around late at night. Is there a curfew? Calm the traffic on Tucson Blvd. This year there's been a dramatic increase in use of Tucson Blvd. as a N-S thoroughfare, which could destroy the quality of life in our neighborhood. Thick oleanders on SE part of the part have people living/sleeping in them. Children alone are not safe in this area, needs thinned out & monitored. Maybe a few more lights for night crossing the park, some nice lantern-type lights along the olive tree path near the pool leading to Forgeus.
It would be nice if the park had more shady sitting areas or park benches for relaxing and not just sports facilities. Improve the lighting, I walk my dogs at night and need a flashlight to see. Enforce leash laws, finish repairs on tennis bathrooms. More tables & sitting equipment near play areas. More trees, benches, places to sit, relax and not do anything, just hang out. Please add play areas more appropriate for children 6-12, like Reid Park. Replace trees that have been removed.
Save the old high slide. Pool should be open on weekends in summer and stay open longer. It's a neighborhood treasure. I love walking regularly with friends & my dog. It is also wonderful to have it as a resource for boot camp. I love the park for general use, definitely believe fields are valuable resources for the area. Would use the pool if there were evening & weekend adult lap hours. More shade structures, especially since big trees cut down in west play area. Too much skin cancer, let's shade our children. Keep the park for walking. Occasionally there has been an aggressive dog jumping at me with a smirking owner. The homeless with their supermarket carts have not yet been a threat but are depressing to always see. Shade canopy over play structure. Sealed trash cans (i.e. with lids) for better sanitation. Ban drummers, they go on all day without interruption on weekends, it is so loud sometime that it echoes, is very irritating. Move soccer games & Society for Creative Anachronism somewhere else.
Re recycling bins: they use up probably 10 parking spaces; that is a lot of space in an area where there is little parking except on neighborhood streets. I was truly surprised when my tax $$ were used to put up the Hippie Hill sign; when I called the Parks Dept., the answer was someone had requested it. Hmmmm... do we all get what we request? Plant more trees around the park and put in some benches or rocks to sit on. If small enough for sitting, they could not be used to sleep on. A path round the park for walkers would be wonderful.
Need leash enforcement or dog park area. Put in a dog park (attacked by unleashed dogs twice). Somehow we need to keep folks from parking & driving on the park grounds. Be more considerate of noise impacting the neighborhood; put a ban on bongo playing groups. Arizona ranks #2 in the world in skin cancer incidence. The least we can do is provide a shade structure over the playgrounds and pool. When my grandchildren visit from Phoenix & Guatemala, they make a beeline for the park & library. Demonstration vegetable garden with rainwater recapture, maybe especially geared for elder access. Would love to see a free waterplay area for young people with an open-air cafe for adults next to it. Very Euro, very refreshing for everyone + cafe generates $$.
When a tree is cut down please plant another & continue to save the old swings & slide. Trees: xeric natives that provide shade: mesquite natives that can tolerate the irrigation needed to keep the grass green, sycamore. Fast-growing (some), slower growing, longer-lived in areas significant for overall appearance. No eucalyptus. Community service TPD officers to patrol unleashed community dogs in the p.m.. We have used this park since we were children--1954!
Enhance Himmel Park Library:Need more computers (they are all hooked commonly) and appropriate space for them. The staff is excellent, friendly, helpful & happy. It's difficult to believe that they are government employees. A slightly larger library might be nice to make more books available at Himmel Branch. We have a great relationship with the library. I love Himmel Park library, especially for the size and I can get books from the other branches. (Library) is well lighted, has sufficient tables for working at, and encompasses community info on bulletin boards.
I hope Himmel Park Library remains as is. Do you keep a small southern style branch library to serve a local area, or spend lots of money, tear it down & build a larger, glitzy branch to serve a larger core? Downtown is not that far away, especially with new tram lines to come, so if you need more, go downtown. Keep it the way it is. Better lighting between library & parking areas. Larger meeting rooms Need more chairs or seating areas for casual in-house reading of periodicals. Basically more seating and maybe some of those "kiddie computer stations" that the main library has downtown. I don't go alone after dark. I hate being solicited by petitioners at the front door.
Appreciate it being open on Sunday. Should be open every weekend. Need more meeting space. Encourage more events, poetry readings, book donation drives. Larger library facility, more CDs and DVDs.
We love the library & the employees there. It would be great to have more reading space & a larger juvenile/kids section. It is a treasure in our neighborhood. Need better lighting for older people. More monitoring of kids' use on computers, i.e. inappropriate content. Larger building, more book & video selection. Love the location, I use Himmel Park Library frequently. Need earlier hours in summer for people who walk there. The library is always crowded and busy. It is small and cramped. The computers are always in use when I go there (several times a week). Keep all homeless people out of park & library. They urinate in front of children, drink and smoke dope, also keep them out of the park, just for safety of children.
Very friendly and helpful staff. How about updating music selections? I am concerned about the accuracy of the book return process. Seems too easy for books to be "lost," i.e. not recorded as returned. Happened to me 3 times (in 8 years).
Add more music CDs. Keep open 7 days a week, as now. I am grateful it is in the neighborhood, service is outstanding. I read a minimum of 12 (non-fiction) books a month and for an enthusiastic reader this library has been ideal (40 years in Tucson).
Make the building larger by expanding to the east. Add a drop-off box for drive-up service on the corner. Somewhat concerned about homeless residents but they seem to be nice. A bigger library would be nice but they are always very good about getting books from other branches. It is the best part of our park. I helped pass the petition to save it back in the late 60's. The size seems sufficient for neighborhood use but we are somewhat ignorant about usage needs & numbers. It probably needs more computing space. We love the extended hours. May need more seated table space, place for librarians to consult.
Would be nice to have more S.H. neighborhood history, with photos, archives at library. Bigger is better! Meeting room is small & awkward. I use it all the time and love having a library within walking distance. My 3 daughters "grew up" in there and now our grandchildren occasionally attend story hour and select books on grandma's card. Would love to see an additional area for meeting space, with room for 30-50 people. Parking is a pain sometimes, not enough though to be a serious issue. Library is incredible asset to our neighborhood. While it seems big enough, I'm sure we'd all enjoy add'l resources. More chairs/couches. Enforce silence! Enlarge space to house more materials. Would like the mystery books shelved separately from regular fiction. They used to do that. Lectures now and then. More comfy reading chairs. More children and senior programs, i.e. solar energy. More meeting space. Need to expand and update children's section. Could be a lot bigger library. More after-school programs for children. Perfect as is, though parents/librarians let kids be too noisy. Street people hang around library. Sometimes it makes me uncomfortable. Outside ban leaf blowers, inside ban cell phones. We appreciate having the library nearby. I'm very pleased with Himmel Park Library and the staff. Expand the facility w/o reducing park area, 2nd story viable? It's wonderful. More children's programs would be nice. The new layout is an improvement.
Bigger would be better, but that's expensive. I would love Himmel Park Library to be twice as big, the space is very small. More inviting, contemporary yet classic in keeping w/neighborhood. Child-friendly children's section, drop-off drive-thru for returns. Library is dirty and run down. I do not like using the computers. They are too old and dirty. When I took my granddaughter to storytime, it was crowded and chaotic. I'd like to see 2 large activity rooms added, one for toddler and parent activities, and one for elder activities. Wonderful staff, always helpful. I am a big library user, so the bigger the library, the better! Natural light for meeting room & toilets, solar tubes or similar; if there's building money, a space committed for Wifi users indoors. Please keep its basic appearance. No "modern" facade changes. It is unfortunate that what appear to be homeless people are allowed to "camp" on the library grounds with an abundance of belongings. This does not send a positive message to anyone, especially mothers with young children.
Great library, missed it when it was closed for remodeling. It could be slightly larger, but I wouldn't want it to expand & lose its character. Library meeting space is small; another would be nice as a venue for classes or other community events.
Library is not a safe environment for people who actually want a quiet reading place, as children (and adults) are allowed to scream, run amok & talk loudly. So disappointed that after its recent remodel the kids' section is not partitioned with soundproofing walls, etc. I like it that it's a small library, it feels very much like a neighborhood library. I just wish it was bigger and had a better selection! We love the library. Could be twice the size. It's a convenient pickup location for items placed on hold online.
I love Himmel Park Library because it's modest in size & friendly. With TPPL request system we have access to most anything. Belong to an org. that uses the meeting room, appreciated. Very important to keep the small, personal community atmosphere of the library. Homeless people should not be so "close" to library entrance, especially at night. Plant flowers or green shrubs in front of library, maybe a few concrete benches to sit. Get input from librarians & staff. Woods is a good beginning model. More reference materials.
Expand literature section. The library is a jewel in the SH neighborhood. They're always busy. Expand it & re landscape w/desert plants. Perhaps pull in Edge H.S. to do clean-up. Increase # of books on tape. I am sure that the near constant presence of homeless men is at least unsettling to parents bringing children to the library. Have it open on Sundays, add a room for more books. A larger reading room with views of the park. Some are bothered by homeless people, but most are "regulars" so don't seem to be a problem. Always interior improvements that can be made, arrangements for new books, it's awkward now. Add outdoor garden/reading area, stacks, story area to kids section.
With reserve system no need to enlarge. One of the pleasures of Himmel Park Library is its homeyness. I almost feel like I could be walking into my living room when I go into it. More books would be good & more up-to-date books & educational DVDs, more BBC DVDs. The librarians make our visits to Himmel Park Library enjoyable. I like it small and homey. Expanding is a good idea, better selection of books would draw in more people. Should be open M-Sat 9 a.m. - 8 p.m.. Not enough computers for too many people; also homeless should find another place to use computers. More meeting room space. I hoe we can explore an expansion of the facility which is so vital to our neighborhoods. Have more night hours. This is a charming, restful library. Please don't ruin the small quiet neighborhood feeling.
More Sunday hours would be great. The new front desk arrangement is lovely. Children's activities should be separated from the main library area. Any extension (e.g. full or partial 2nd floor) should take this into account. Outdoor reading area. Longer hours of operation would be helpful. The library is so crammed in the kids section it's difficult to get a book off the shelf or flip thru for browsing. Create outdoor screened-in "reading ramadas", also use reflective roof coatings to conserve energy to keep library cooler, employ rain water harvesting from the roof to create shaded ramadas and library outdoor beautification.
It is small and smelly, needs to have more natural light to make it inviting, morebooks, better hours. We would like to see the art, humanities, philosophy sections updated & enhanced. It is an amazing resource for our neighborhood, we are so lucky to have it. It's well used, well organized, a great source of info (via bulletin board), book clubs, a model! It would be nice if reading sandy area were larger, if children's area were in a separate room. Special musical events by the library are very nice and give a great neighborly feel to the park. I am always impressed with the selection of books. Drive-thru for returning books. Would like early AM opening hours so I can walk there before it's too hot.
Reduce video/DVD checkout times to 1 week w/1 renewal. I like that it is community oriented. Great library, needs more Spanish language books for children & teenagers. It always seems very busy, which is good. More meeting space needed, maybe adaptive reuse of water tower can help. Keep library & enhance service. They need to keep up better with new releases of books, takes too long to go thru the system, get cataloged and on the shelf. It's a great library! I'm always impressed with how well used & loved it is, as I am with the park. Meditation classes? Great job with children's storytimes & programming. Could enhance hours, children's section. It would be nice to have it open for a few hrs. Sunday p.m.. Just continue to encourage the Sat. am literacy workshops. We love it the way it is! Keeping library small keeps it like a real neighborhood feel, expanding would bring too much traffic, outsiders and homeless.
Susan Sontag wrote, ". . . to be overwhelmed by the beautiful is astonishingly sturdy and survives amidst the harshest distractions." A park must be beautiful, an oasis of becoming calm in the midst of an increasingly stressful world. An addition for art, lectures, book signings, meetings & celebrations. The library needs to be enlarged, go north, no reason for that grassy area between the library and the church. We like the updates & remodeling that were recently done. It would be very unfortunate if we ever lost this library.
Start book groups, poetry readings, focus on neighborhood history & personalities, open one night a week in summer, encourage people to bring picnic suppers with music; reinvigorate Hippie Hill w/music, theatre, dance. More special events: book signings, readings, poetry, etc. It seems perfectly adequate and easier to use now with the access to our reserved books and self-checkout.
Adaptive Reuse of Water Tower:
We need a local full time senior center and daycare center. Catalina Methodist Church promised one, then reneged. Why? In Berkeley, CA they have a successful (I believe) tool lending program (like a lending library). Would that idea be practical for this area? Would love to see it restored. Tucson has destroyed so many of its historic buildings, underpasses, etc. Maybe tower could be an extension of AZ Historical Society with photos, memorabilia from SH Neighborhood. I am across the street from the tower. I don't find the water tower meaningful or value adding to the park or the neighborhood. It seems that if someone slaps the word "historic" to it, people mobilize to preserve it. I'd rather see the property razed, sold, and the $$ from the sale applied to pool/tennis//home/samhughe/www/inc/playground improvements.
I just think it should be a space where various groups from the community can meet to address concerns or projects generated in the community itself. Whether that can be done in an outdoor setting or not, I don't know. That corner is a bad place to cross Tucson Blvd. We see no value in preserving the water tower. I do not support spending $$ to restore the tower. Meeting space is a good idea. So is a sculpture garden. This property could augment the important functions of both the park & library. Use exterior & interior for storage only. Almost anything would be better than how it is now. A garden w/shade for families and folks to gather and enjoy activities/demos, etc. would be great!
Get a contractor to look inside to see how it was built. All he needs to do is add 20 ft. at same taper, and put on red tile roof. If there's no equipment in tower, the water dept. could furnish an old pump and pipe. You could build a small ramada, showing how the Colo. River water gets to Tucson. You could add xeriscape garden around the ramada, have an information booth to show people how things worked.
A "Living Museum of Water in the SW" Water harvesting demo, especially good for the history of water use that the tower shows. Garden for community-liaison with S.H. Elementary, 2nd St. School, and other schools with residents. Groups could help with big labor needs, fertilizing, digging, planting, etc. Any of the water tower uses listed would be a nice complement to H.P. & the library. Thank you for getting community input - it is nice to be asked. We love our neighborhood! This is an historic structure and it should not be allowed to rot. It can add to the beauty of the neighborhood and if it becomes a site used by the public, the park & library may also benefit from increased attendance.
Don't spend so much money just to renovate old water tower. Spending $$ to restore the water tower is a huge waste. Why not create a neighborhood garden, or off-leash dog park, or picnic area, or memorial? Tear it down, not everything old is worth saving. Buy trees for the park. Mini historical society museum, focusing on the history of Himmel Park (who was Himmel?) and the S.H. neighborhood & school. This needs more publicizing. Silly use of $$. Put it in the park. Rehab projects always cost way more than budgeted so there will never be enough! Incorporate community garden w/green waste composting to xeriscaped demonstration. A meeting space would be good. Then the library could utilize the current meeting space for library needs.
Art gallery & sculpture garden is maintenance-admin. overhead expense. Put creative focus on garden, small signs to ID plants or explain water method is sufficient. Library can/should have more info. Kiosks are expensive, get vandalized, deteriorate in sun. Could meeting space be administered by library? P.S. BRAVO for all the work & $$ to preserve and expand the school!
We question whether the water tower actually has any historic value. Surely there is a better use of the land & $$. How about a dog park? A "dog park" on the water tower property with grass & fence would get a lot of use, I think. I don't really see the point in reconstructing that building.
This should be "maintained" as historic building but space used as xeriscape example. Funds should be considered to at least "maintain" water tower #2 which is just being ignored outright, a real "eye-sore." I am completely opposed to spending $$ on the water tower. All of the above suggestions are superfluous. The water tower is not historic, just old. I think the land should be sold (as a residential lot) and all proceeds used to enhance the library and park and pool. I believe water tower restoration is a complete waste of our resources because of one man's folly, and where is the $$ going to come from to maintain once finished?
Would like to see it as science promotion area. We need to promote and encourage sciences. Start with basics & move on. Educational uses, allow children a place to take a field trip & learn more about the city's history. Display historical photos of the SH neighborhood. Don't do it, keep grass & trees. I thought the City was out of $$, how you gonna pay for improvements? I believe the $30K could be used for better projects than the water tower. The information (on gardening, water conservation) would be run by the library. The concept is good but impractical. The building is too small. Open to community w/good lighting & easy access. I'm not sure we need another "meeting space." Library & Ward VI office do a fine job & have better parking. However, an outdoor shade ramada or shade cloth shelter with bleachers might be useful, if tours or outdoors-oriented classes could use it.
A bulletin board kiosk might be worth trying: see if it's useful or becomes a nuisance, without spending too much initially. It could be used also as a refreshment center/cafe, including an art gallery, sculpture garden. Then people wishing to have meetings could meet as they would in a coffee shop. All sound like positive moves; however, a xeriscape garden sounds like the most beneficial and educational. How about an exhibit that gives historical information about the neighborhood? It would be great to combine all those things above.
I would volunteer with art gallery, sculpture garden and gardening. Does the water tower have any historic value? Designation? It's historical and familiar-let's keep it!
Practical lab use area for the library. Keep it cheap & easy. This thing isn't that great treasure since it's not contiguous with the park. Rented out income:?" Arts rotating-how manned & charged? Events at the library could happen there: club meeting space, 1) seniors, 2) rec. classes, 3) youth center (small like Reid Rec. with games, foosball, Ping-Pong), outdoor exercise area like at La Madera Park. Every community benefits from a multi-use central focus. This could be it! All these are too expensive to build & maintain. Any reconstruction is too expensive. Encourage water company to sell the lot after demolishing water tower. Use the $$ for improvements to H.P. & library. Let the water company & Parks & Rec. work it out, with pressure & input from the 4 neighborhoods. By the way, I wrote the grant to obtain most of the $$ in our treasury devoted to the water tower & John Blackwell oversaw the most recent blueprint for the renovation. Another suggestion: put up a nice wrought iron fence around the tower w/a plaque detailing its history. Then get a group-perhaps from UofA or Edge School (which now owns the building across from Himmel tennis courts) to design a xeriscape garden on the west. Edge students could maintain it. I'm already working w/them on another garden project.
A passive use is OK, rainwater harvesting example for xeriscape? No active use. People won't take the effort to go here. Question parking space. Question crossing Tucson. Incorporate meeting, art, sculpture & xeriscape. Biggest concern is funding on-going costs/insurance. Please keep the children in mind (crafts & games center) and use this space as a family center. This is still a questionable project due to costs and lack of funding sources. Needs to be something vandals won't ruin too easily. Probably won't have $$ to do things twice. Use graffiti resistant paints/materials? Waste of resources. How much would annual cost to keep all these going be? Who would run them, staff them, pay for continuation? Sell the land to raise add'l $$ to enhance our park & library.
We would appreciate "Sam Hughes" historic area street signs south of 6th. The signs are only on the Norton side of 6th so the south side is thought not to be a part. Retail plant shop. Could be not only a lovely place to be and a good place for community meetings, but an educational tool for low water use gardens & conservation of water since it's a water tower. Just restore it, the bldg. has sat vacant & in disrepair for too long...or sell it. I live right by the water tower. Everyone should consider how neighbors will be negatively impacted by a parking lot, bathrooms, etc. It's an historic water tower, keep it as such. Could it become a family friendly cafe with outdoor seating? $30,000 is just a small start!
Any type of floral garden, no cactus please. A quiet garden atmosphere would be great near the water tower. The restoration is a waste of time and $$. What a crock! I really like the idea of a xeriscape demonstration garden, more education like this is needed and will be appreciated. How about a community garden with plots shared by neighborhood residents? Perhaps a community vegetable/flower garden. Encountered such on a recent visit to Boston, chatted with many neighborhood users, very positive feedback. Looked beautiful and was beneficial to many, a sharing by all of lovely produce & flowers.
Build a new water collection system to function. Tucson has had an unfortunate history of destroying interesting, historic structures. Don't let that fate befall the water tower. Can both visually enhance an urban area & provide land & indoor space for innovative use by the park and community. It should be restored to reflect the historic status of S.H., a neighborhood landmark. Think it would be restored to its original look but turning it into a usable space should not be a priority. Community needs: meeting/function room; yoga classes, etc., information resource center. Meeting space and community garden demonstrating both xeriscape & fruits as well as butterfly & hummingbird attraction gardens.
Precinct voting site, permanent outdoor presentation of neighborhood history & people. Open posting board for area events. Mini farmers market site for Community Food Bank garden? Their fresh food, our cash. Would they try it once a month? Tear it down, use $30K to feed homeless and indigent. Stop looking back; we're taking this historic idea way too far. I'd rather spend $$ on lights. Could use tower as meeting space and make current meeting room at the library into space for books. Community garden space? Fence in to keep out stray animals, provide water source & it could be a beautiful & functional space for gardening that would pull together the neighbors. Great opportunity for education re water use in desert and desert garden. Would be great if there could be a solar energy demonstration part associated with the garden. Meeting spaces are always needed. The library meeting room is relatively small & frequently booked. Security should be planned for potential future uses.
Landscape it & keep as historic landmark with suitable use. How about something "green" like a solar energy shed, recycling/freecycle area, compost making area? An area to house bats to help alleviate mosquito issues. Whatever you do should be beautiful. Gardens can be spiritual places, aesthetics should be a primary concern. It might be useful as a meeting space but since Tucson Blvd. physically separates it from the park, I view it as a separate entity. Space for community yard sales, bake sales, book sales to benefit park, school, etc. this community needs more beauty, more shade, more fountains, more gardens and a greater sense of personal safety for its citizens. Information kiosk is not practical, who would man it, who would decide what information? It's a symbol of times past, a good place to meet (i.e. I'll pick you up at the water tower), provides character to an otherwise drab area. The tower is historic but not at all attractive; I would not care if it were gone, it doesn't feel like part of the park. Should be a focal point and/or symbol for SH neighbors.