Construction begins July 2023 on an exciting expansion targeting teenagers to the Charlestown Family Activities Park.
Community listening sessions were held to gain input from teenagers and families as to what an expansion should entail. Charlestown High School students delivered, pitching ideas for an experience they’d utilize with friends.
The result is one big hangout space featuring outdoor games, a stage, a smoothie/coffee bar, access to video game systems, and more. From shaded cabanas to fun lounge chairs, teens can kick back in a safe space to hang.
VIDEO: The Depot, Expansion to the Family Activities Park
Dan Cristiani Excavating won the bid to construct the space, which is expected to open this fall. The space is designed to be accessible to all abilities.
For young people in the community, opportunities at The Depot would include small events featuring bands, movies, e-Sports tournaments, open mic nights, and more.
“This project addresses the needs from the 2021 Parks Masterplan seeking activities for teens,” said Mayor Treva Hodges. “Students were excited to see our initial concept after designing a space based on their ideas. The students then gave more suggestions leading to the finalized concept.”
Including the teen demographic as a voice for putting The Depot in action was an important step for the parks staff.
“The space rounds out the Family Activities Park when it comes to targeting all age groups,” said Parks Director Marissa Knoebel. “Teens can also use the current amenities like pickleball, mini golf and roller skating while visiting The Depot.”
Younger visitors can still use amenities like the pirate playground and the splash pad, which was recently upgraded to a slip-resistant flooring. The new space could potentially expand offerings at the popular Christmas season.
“Students and families shared with us an excitement to have birthdays, graduation parties, and team building opportunities at the Family Activities Park,” said Hodges.
As of July 2023, attendance has increased 24 percent since 2022 and the addition of The Depot is expected to draw more from the region and locally.
The Depot is slated to be constructed in two phases. Phase one ($250,000), approved by the Redevelopment Commission, features outdoor games, a hang out space, and smoothie/coffee bar. Additional funding will be sought for the second phase, which would include a mini-soccer field and beach volleyball.