2018 elections

Vinalhaven approves playground improvements

Wed, 11/07/2018 - 3:00am

VINALHAVEN — Vinalhaven voters approved the island’s municipal question about improving the playground located at the Vinalhaven School by a total of 436 to 260. 

The question stated: “Do you favor authorizing the School Board of Maine School Administrative District No. 8 to issue bonds or notes in the name of this District in an amount not to exceed $157,929 to fund a portion of the costs of the playground improvement project (the ‘Playground Project’)?”

The question appeared previously in the March 2017 referendum, though the total cost at that time was set at $588,000 with $500,000 to be financed and no money raised through fundraising efforts. 

This time, the total cost, as of September, was set at $271,763 with $157,929 to be financed at 3.4 percent interest, amounting to $34,392 for five years. Additionally, $40,500 has been raised through fundraising efforts, as of September. 

Despite the significant decrease in cost, safe and developmentally appropriate equipment will still be able to be purchased, according to a pamphlet circulated. 

The pamphlet noted this proposal included an “inclusive community design process lead by community playground committee, aggressive and sustained fundraising efforts [and] honors soccer field location, dimensions, and provides safe field buffers.” 

Highlights of the Playground
• Final design by GameTime as chosen by community members
• Main structure fits within perimeters of existing footprint
• Pre-K area added outside of the K-1-2 wing to be state compliant
• Old basketball court becomes flat top play area with lower hoops; four square and hop scotch area
• New basketball court relocated to west of current playground; for older children and adults
• Soccer field gains expanded safety zone as required
• Concrete walkway/trike track around main play structure designed to provide accessibility for all children
• Numerous components of both play areas offer appropriate and inclusive sensory stimulation for all children

Budget (as of Sept. 11, 2018)
• Site work — $31,260 (estimate)
• Concrete trike track — $18,375 (estimate)
• Concrete basketball court for older children and adults — $22,278 (estimate)
• Contingency — $4,500
• Total site excavation and concrete — $76,413
• Total equipment and installation (equipment, chips, trash bins, benches) — $195,350 
• Total project cost — $271,763 

Proposed Funding Sources
• Capital Reserve — $73,334
• Fundraising — $40,500
• Financed (through Nov. 6 referendum) — $157,929