The City of Globe City Council is in the process of approving a far-reaching 2022-2023 budget that will include funds dedicated to providing citizens an improved quality of life with investments into City parks and a reimagined community pool.
“This is a great moment in the history of our City parks,” says Globe Mayor Al Gameros. “We are grateful to BHP, CVRMC, Freeport, Gila County, and our other community partners for providing funding for these important projects.”
The City of Globe has received more than $700,000 from BHP to upgrade parks around the city, including the community pool, and install water refill stations throughout historic downtown in an effort to increase recreational options for citizens and travelers alike.
The work is part of the city’s Parks and Recreation Revitalization Plan that also includes reopening the pool later this summer.
Additions to the City’s parks includes:
- Replacement of playground equipment at the Globe Community Center and City Hall Veterans Park, paid for with $250,000 in grant funds;
- A new Splash Pad, paid for with a $100,000 in grant funds; and,
- Water bottle filling stations throughout Historic Downtown, via a $30,000 grant.
The Parks and Recreation Revitalization Plan is part of the City’s 2020-2023 Strategic Action Plan and through the generosity of BHP, several of the recreational goals for the community are well on the way to being met.
“We want to thank BHP for bringing these new playgrounds into the community,” says Linda Oddonetto, Globe Economic & Community Development Director. “City Council has prioritized recreation and improving our parks as a key Council focus in the years ahead and this will be a big help.”
Oddonetto added that Gila County deserves a big thanks too, as earlier this year, the Board of Supervisors approved an impressive $100,000 expenditure that will go a long way toward helping meet Council’s goals.
There was a dramatic increase in park use during the COVID-19 pandemic, and now the community demand for recreational amenities is at an all time high. The City continues to work to make them a more valuable and welcoming resource.
City parks not only encourage more healthy lifestyles, but they have also been identified as important economic drivers by several City initiatives, including the Strategic Action Plan, the Recharge Our Community Economy Action Plan that was sponsored by HUD, and facilitated by Rural Communities Assistance Corporation, as well as the Cobre Valley Collaborative Three-Year Community Action Plan, sponsored by Vitalyst Health Foundation and Arizona Partnership for Healthy Communities, facilitated by Pinnacle Prevention.
Parks and places of recreation can contribute to community well-being by increasing physical activity and reducing stress, and strengthening social ties by providing spaces for art, athletics and events. Open spaces have also been attributed to decreases in crime.
Globe’s Recreation Master Plan is a direct result of a desire to establish social and built infrastructures that reinforce the ability to recover from shocks to the community, such as the recent pandemic.
“We’re excited to see the community turn out to use our public facilities,” Oddonetto says. “These grants, including $250,000 from BHP to help fund the Community Center Pool Complex project, bring us so much closer to our goals for parks in the City, and when these upgrades are done, our community’s parks will be a place of pride for our residents.”
Despite delays Globe Community Center Pool project moves forward
The refurbishment of the Community Center Pool has been a long time coming since the pool’s closure in 2014, as citizens of the Globe-Miami area waited for a dependable place to play and compete during Arizona’s long, hot summers.
In 2019, with financial help from Freeport MacMoRan, the City executed an engineering study and found that for an estimated $850,000, the pool could be brought back into service for the foreseeable future. Plans were put in place and a budget set aside for 2020, but then the pandemic hit and everything stopped.
“During the pause, we had time to reconsider the project and with community input decided to expand it to fit in with our vision for a first-rate park system in Globe,” Oddonetto says. “We approached several potential partners and reimagined possibilities for the facility.”
The City sought to create a complex that would reflect its commitment to parks and recreation and a better quality of life for the people who live in the area and residents the City hopes to attract in the future.
The result was a $2.3 million overhaul of the pool, its grounds and facilities that will add a new dimension, and some much-needed relief from the heat.
The new site footprint will be double the size of the old and will feature new decking and bathrooms, slides, an outdoor seating area, a grassy area for kids to play, shade awnings and a splash pad.
The pool will be refurbished and heated and will have an open swimming area as well as lanes specifically set aside for lap swimming and a removable bulkhead for competitive swimming events.
Thanks to funds from the American Recovery Plan Act (ARPA), as well as donations and grants from a variety of community partners, the project is well on its way to completion, despite the hardships of a post-pandemic world that has seen supply chain issues in every business sector and a nationwide material and labor shortage.
Last December, the Cobre Valley Regional Medical Center announced it would dedicate $1.9 million to the Community Center Pool, funding that was dedicated by the hospital board to increase health and wellness opportunities for our community.
Through its Community Investment Grant Program, Freeport McMoRan awarded the City $250,000; the United Fund of Globe-Miami awarded a $200,000 grant; Capstone contributed $100,000 and BHP provided a total of $250,000. The Gila County Board of Supervisors contributed $100,000 as well as about $60,000 in services hauling away concrete and debris from the site.
For its part, the City will take on all pool staffing, operations, and maintenance responsibilities.
City staff rolled out a preliminary $42.5 million budget in June, which includes full funding for pool operations, and should everything fall into place, the final budget will be adopted at council on July 26.
The budget also includes additional maintenance funding for our Public Works Department allowing the City to uphold its commitments to investment partners and to the community we serve.
“These gifts require maintenance and we’ve agreed to pay operation costs,” Oddonetto says. “Our partners from BHP to Gila County to the federal government are investing capital in our community, so we need additional people to take care of the things we’ve been given to maintain their value over time.”
Quality of life investments are paramount to the City’s goals for the foreseeable future.
Journalist, writer and editor who has worked for community newspapers for more than 15 years. After four years at Davis-Monthan AFB and a few years living in Tucson, moved to California to find his fortune. He is happy to be back in Arizona, in the mountains he loves.