BURBANK CITY COUNCIL MEETING WRAP-UP

NEW LANDSCAPING FOR GROSS PARK

Children at Robert Gross Park, in central Burbank, will soon be the beneficiary of new playground equipment the City Council approved Tuesday night.

The council unanimously decided to spend $250,000 for the new equipment, which includes an interactive play system meant to encourage children to play longer and improve coordination, balance, agility, motor-planning skills and imagination, officials said.

The action is in line with the city’s philosophy to create “unique play areas that are not cookie cutter in design,” according to a report.

Officials estimate that the removal and replacement of the play equipment, sand and rubberized surface will cost $172 while a new shade structure will total $78,000.

WHAT IT MEANS

Construction could begin this year.

SCHOOL CONTRIBUTIONS

The council approved a one-time contribution of $14,500 for students traveling to Washington, D.C., later this year to study the federal government. The funds will be made available to up to 29 students from Burroughs and Providence high schools who will take part in the annual Close-Up Program, a weeklong interactive experience to introduce high school students with the operation of the three branches of the U.S. government.

Burroughs is expecting to send 21 students at an estimated cost of $2,568 per student. Providence officials said they will send eight students, with each one carrying a projected $1,960 price tag. The city will contribute a maximum of $500 for each student to participate in the program run by Close-Up, a nonprofit, nonpartisan foundation that has given students an inside glimpse of government machinations to more than 600,000 people since 1971.

Burbank High School and Bellarmine-Jefferson will not be participating in the program this year, as they had in the past. No Burbank High students were interested in participating this year, and Bellarmine-Jefferson is instead sending a group to tour the East Coast, officials said.

WHAT IT MEANS

The program runs Jan. 17to 23.

CHANDLER BIKEWAY

A name change for Burbank’s popular bikeway, where walkers and cyclists have repeatedly clashed, could soon be in store after the council asked two city groups to consider renaming the route.

The Friends of the Chandler Bikeway, run by the Parks, Recreation and Community Services Department; and the Traffic Commission, will now consider changing the Chandler Bikeway name to incorporate its wider usage.

The council stayed away from larger changes that some had pushed for, citing funding the city receives, which stipulates that Burbank cannot alter the usage of the bikeway.

There has been one official police report of a mid-path accident on the bikeway, along with anecdotes of close calls between walkers, cyclists, roller-bladers and others.

WHAT IT MEANS

A report from the two groups will come during a future council meeting.


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