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Renovated Mount Jefferson Park awaits city inspections before reopening

The renovation of Mount Jefferson Park is complete, and the city will conduct inspections between now and May 2023 (staff photo by James Cullum)

After more than six months of delay, the renovation of Mount Jefferson Park is complete.

City inspections now stand between the park reopening to the public, according to the city. That process could take another two months.

Developer Stonebridge agreed with the city to renovate the 4.6-acre park as part of its deal to construct the massive Oakville Triangle project. The park has been shut down since construction began between the 300 Block of E. Raymond Avenue and Richmond Highway (Route 1) in January 2022. The project, which includes removing invasive species and reshaping trails, was initially scheduled to wrap last September.

“They’ve (Stonebridge) encountered supply chain issues, weather delays, as well as some design revisions that occurred last fall that they’re trying to work through,” Alexandria Park Planner Judy Lo told ALXnow.

She said the city has not done any inspections on the improvements since the park was closed down last January.

“We definitely want to make sure all the improvements are constructed according to the approved plans and that the park is safe for the public to use,” she said.

Alexandria has had plans to renovate the park on the books since 2015.

Today, Friday, Del Ray resident Ron F. was walking his dog near the park when he shared with ALXnow his desire to see the park open soon.

“How long does it take to inspect a park?” asked Ron, who only gave the initial of his last name. “It looks ready to open. It looks safe.”

City inspections are scheduled between March and May, and the park could be opened sooner than May if inspections are completed, Lo said.

“If inspections go well, the park will open,” Lo said. “If there’s a section that can open, we can definitely look at opening it in sections.”

Ron contends the process should not take that long, saying “it’s trails and trees.”

According to the city:

The City, in conjunction with the Oakville Triangle/Route 1 Corridor planning process, developed a plan in 2015 for the Mount Jefferson Park & Greenway between East Raymond Ave. and Route 1.

The approved plan draws inspiration from the site’s former use as a railroad, and seeks to balance the natural characteristics of the park through enhanced landscape plantings and the preservation of the nature trails south of Fannon Street.

Improvements to the 4.6-acre park area include site drainage and stormwater infrastructure, an ADA multi-use permeable trail and trail connectors, an expanded off-leash dog exercise area, native plantings, invasive species removal, a new speed table at Raymond Avenue to slow vehicular traffic, a new water meter, new park wayfinding signage, and new historical interpretative features.

Walking in Mount Jefferson Park in Del Ray (staff photo by James Cullum)