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Clarkston considers revamp of Brockett pocket park

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Clarkston considers revamp of Brockett pocket park

Councilmember Susan Hood, Councilmember Awet Eyasu, committee members Adria Marshall, Lisa Williams, and Debbie Gathmann. Photo by Sara Amis

Clarkston, GA — Clarkston’s Transportation and Environment Committee met on Dec. 20 to discuss plans for the Brockett Triangle pocket park.

The city contracted with Shades of Green Permaculture to create a demonstration edible community garden there in May 2020 but is already planning to remove some of the plantings or put something else in the space entirely.

Committee member Debbie Gathmann said that she felt the project was too ambitious without volunteers or staff to maintain the space. Council member Awet Eyasu, who is chair of the committee, said that the city does not currently have a full-time parks manager, although there are plans to hire one next year.

Gathmann said that she is a member of Trees Atlanta and that the organization recently planted a pocket park over by Greenbriar Mall.  Blueberries, serviceberries, and a paw paw tree were chosen for that park because they are low maintenance.  Gathmann added that a Boy Scout troop from the neighborhood will take responsibility for the Greenbriar park.

Council member Susan Hood said that the community originally wanted the park to produce food, but it wasn’t clear to her whether it was being used by anyone.

In addition to members of the committee, Mayor Beverly Burks and Vice Mayor Debra Johnson were both in attendance. Johnson said that the community near the park should be consulted before making any more decisions. 

Community member Brian Medford suggested that the space could be made more friendly for children to play, since there are no play spaces on that side of the city. 

Burks and others said that there had originally been an agreement with Shades of Green for maintenance of the space, but it wasn’t clear what had happened to that agreement, and it didn’t appear that the space had been maintained.

Interim City Manager Tammi Saddler Jones said that Russell Landscaping was prepared to offer a proposal for maintenance once the city decided what to do with the space.

Burks requested that the committee have a plan for the next steps to bring to the next council work session on Jan. 28.

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