In an effort to build trust, be accountable for the past, and create inclusive and welcoming parks that address issues of inequity, the City of Eugene is collaborating with Black community members to design improvements to Mattie Reynolds Park, Martin Luther King Jr. Park, and Alton Baker Park. Outcomes of the work will include:
Development plans for Mattie Reynolds and Martin Luther King Jr. Parks that meet the needs of park users with an emphasis on Black community members.
Guidance and collaboration on story-telling, art, and interpretation at each park site.
Relationship building and groundwork for meaningful engagement in future work.
Design and construction of Mattie Reynolds and Martin Luther King Jr. Park improvements are funded by the 2018 Parks and Recreation Bond ($4+ million). Ground-breaking is planned in 2024 for Martin Luther King Jr. Park and 2025 for Mattie Reynolds Park. The City and Lane County are working to identify funding for Alton Baker Park interpretive improvements of the “Across the Bridge Community.”
Through this process, the City is listening to additional ideas for community engagement, signage, storytelling, art, and interpretation in other significant locations within Eugene’s Parks and Open Space system.
Honoring Black Legacy
Re-Imagining MLK Jr., Mattie Reynolds and Alton Baker Parks
On October 19, 2022, approximately 85 members of Eugene’s Black community attended an event at the Farmers Market pavilion in downtown Eugene. The event was hosted by the City of Eugene Parks and Open Space Division and members of a Black Advisory Group to engage the community about three park projects that are of significance to the Black community.