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Tower Grove Park wants to know how it can improve the visitor experience

(via Flickr/pasa47)
The Kingshighway entrance to Tower Grove Park in St. Louis.

Officials at Tower Grove Park want to know how they can make the park more enjoyable and accessible to area residents. 

The 148-year-old park, which has long focused on fulfilling the legacy of philanthropist Henry Shaw, has hired Virginia-based landscape architecture firm Rhodeside & Harwell to lead the development of a master plan.

The long-term strategy likely will consider historic preservation, environmental conservation and accessibility for those with disabilities. However, park officials would like to hear from the public first to determine the direction it should take.

"Is our top priority preservation or is our top priority accessibility?" asked Brigid Flynn, development director for Tower Grove Park. "We don't want to necessarily start by saying we know what we need to do to make this park better. We want to start by listening to what people in the community, the people who are running in the park every day, the people who are coming to the farmers' market, the people playing kickball and asking, 'What would a better Tower Grove Park look like?'"

The planning process will begin at 6 p.m., Jan. 18, with an open house in the Piper Palm House. After that date, people can take an online survey on the park's website. Tower Grove Park expects to present a final plan by August.

The plan is underwritten by the Crawford Taylor Foundation and the William T. Kemper Foundation, Commerce Bank Trustee. Each foundation gave $50,000 to the park.

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