West Creek Park opens to an excited community.
It took only a snip from a pair of comically large scissors to open West Creek Park, a deceptively simple gesture capping off more than four years of effort. After a series of lawsuits, a recession, and bankruptcy woes, Newhall Land was finally ready to turn over ownership of the 16.8 acre park to the County of Los Angeles Parks and Recreation Department Friday morning.
Santa Clarita Mayor Laurene Weste and Mayor Pro-tem Marsha McLean, joined County Supervisor Michael D. Antonovich for the ribbon-cutting ceremony. Also present were representatives of the County Parks Department and Newhall Land, which developed the space. West Creek is the 145th addition to the County's parks system.
Russ Guiney, Director of the County Parks Department, said that Newhall Land was determined to keep its commitment to finish the park, despite struggles brought on by the recession in the last two years.
The site, which is nestled behind Rio Norte Junior High School, has appeared finished for two years now, to the frustration of local residents. But sod and swings aren't all that's needed to make a park, and the community has had to be patient through the final checklists as the facilities were brought up to code.
The park was informally opened to the community Wednesday, an event accompanied by a crowd of children and families.
"When they took that fence down, everybody was over here," said Kaye Michelson of the County Parks Department.
In addition to the requisite swings and jungle gyms, the park also includes walking trails, and a small amphitheatre.