The West Fargo Park District is excited to announce that the North Elmwood Park improvement project has officially begun! North Elmwood Park is one of West Fargo’s oldest parks dating back to the 1950s. This park has been home to the Park District’s main offices, maintenance shops, ball fields, shelters, storage, and many other functions. This wooded park just west of the Sheyenne River, north of 13th Ave W is about 25 acres. As the Park District has grown and we have been able to relocate the maintenance facilities, we are now able to continue to adapt and transform to meet the needs of our community, including additional athletic field capacity and improving park access. Although closed for the entire summer of 2022, we hope to have most of the project wrapped up for the park to re-open in 2023.
What will be changed?
The old maintenance shop and offices have already been removed, as well as some other old infrastructure. There will be improvements to the flow of traffic, added parking, youth baseball field with state-of-the-art artificial turf infields, new bathrooms, new concession space, batting cages, and a new shelter. See a detailed plan at https://secureservercdn.net/126.96.36.199/18b.20b.myftpupload.com/wp-content/uploads/2022/06/Plans-with-notes.pdf.
What will not be changed?
The playground in the north portion of the park that includes the zip line will remain. The large, enclosed shelter will also remain, although we are working on a plan for possible improvements to this structure.
How will I eventually access North Elmwood?
The “North Loop” of the park that includes the enclosed shelter, and the playground will be accessed from 9th Ave W. The south Ball Field Complex will be accessed from 13th Ave. The old entrance along the river will be converted into a multi-use trail.
Why is the sledding hill coming out?
Unfortunately, due to river bank erosion we are removing the sledding hill. We’ve been advised by our engineers to remove the hill. Its proximity to the river and slope does not meet the Army Corps of Engineer’s safety guidelines.
Will the skate park be replaced?
We are working on a plan to have a skate park in the same neighborhood as Elmwood Park. Although a final site hasn’t been determined, we hope to have plans in place later this year for an improved skate park.
Why are you sending all the park users through my neighborhood street?
Due to the need to abandon the failing entrance road along the river we are changing the entrance location to the park. Although the entrance to the “North Loop” of the park is switching to be from the North, the Park District anticipates less traffic for that portion of the park than there had been previously.
Because we are separating the ballfield portion from the park portion, we are creating an independent space, including more parking, for ballfield users. We are also decreasing the capacity of our large enclosed shelter to renters.
Why were trees taken out?
The Park District worked to keep the removals to a minimum. The trees that we did remove were mostly of undesirable species, including Ash that is susceptible to the Emerald Ash Borer, shorter lifespan Cottonwood, and volunteer Box Elders. The tree removal will accommodate site changes including better traffic flow, shelters, and building. New species that will be planted are of hardy varieties chosen for the soil type and are drought tolerant.
What’s happening to the playground?
We have plans to make updates and improvements to the playground, but there WILL continue to be a playground in North Elmwood.
Funding for the North Elmwood project comes from the Park District Capital Improvement Fund as well as support from WF Baseball. The neighbors will not be special assessed for this project. Construction has begun and the Park District recommends that users stay clear of the area this summer to allow crews to work and to keep everyone safe!
We can’t wait for the renovation of the beloved park to be complete! Please contact Erin at firstname.lastname@example.org with any questions.