The Fountain Garden at the Bay Park is now open, giving just a preview of the larger park to come.
Need a break this weekend?
A walking path by the water might be nice. Perhaps a park bench to feel the breeze off Sarasota Bay?
Consider taking a stroll around one of Sarasota’s historic ponds, with a restored fountain providing a relaxing sonic backdrop. The Fountain Garden at The Bay Park is now open, The Bay Park Conservancy announced Wednesday.
The Fountain Garden, at Boulevard of the Arts and North Tamiami Trail, features Florida friendly vegetation, walking paths and park benches along with the restored fountain.
The fountain is one of the first segments to be set in the initial phase of the larger 53-acre bay redevelopment project.
“With the opening of the Fountain Garden, we are one step closer to seeing The Bay Park become a reality,” said A.G. Lafley, founding CEO of The Bay Park Conservancy. “We are excited about the continued progress toward our vision of creating a public park that is open, accessible, welcoming, and free to all.”
The Florida-friendly landscaping approach creates a no-mowing and no-fertilizer buffer of about 30 feet around the pond to help improve water quality. The restoration of the historic fountain in the pond provides water circulation.
“Though this is a small project within our bigger initiative, it is emblematic of our dedication to create an environmentally preserved, enhanced, and sustainable Bay Park,” said Bill Waddill, chief implementation officer of The Bay Park Conservancy.
While this is just a preview of the larger park to come, the first 10-acre Phase 1 is expected to break ground this summer, once the site plan is approved by Sarasota city commissioners.
NOTE: This article was originally published by Sarasota Herald-Tribune on January 15, 2020.