YARMOUTH — Lack of upkeep at Latchstring Park is causing concern among residents and town councilors.

As a result, the council is set to approve the creation of a task force that would “explore strategies to beautify the park and make it safer,” according to a memo from Town Manager Nat Tupper.

The council discussed creating the committee at a workshop last week and is expected to take action at its meeting scheduled for Thursday, June 13.

The downtown pocket park at the corner of West Main and West Elm streets contains several benches and a stone monument etched with the names of the winners of Yarmouth’s annual Latchstring Award. The honor is given to residents for outstanding service to the town.

In addition to the park’s somewhat dilapidated condition, residents have also expressed concern recently that some drivers use the park as a shortcut between two busy streets, which they said poses safety hazards to pedestrians and cyclists.

The park is also at the northern end of planned streetscape improvements along Main Street, which makes the effort to create a more inviting and defined green space that much more important, according to Tupper.

This week Tupper said concrete barriers have been set up at the park to discourage vehicular traffic from using it as a cut-through, but that’s only a short-term solution.

“Abutters and others do not like Latchstring Park because it’s not well kept up, and they don’t like the gravel parking lot and they particularly don’t like people using it as cut-through to avoid the traffic light at West Elm and West Main streets,” he said.

Tupper said the task force would likely be made up of representatives from area businesses, residential neighborhoods, the Village Improvement Society and the Parks and Recreation Department, among other stakeholders.

The committee would be charged with “coming up with a concept plan and maybe a budget to turn the park into something nicer and safer,” Tupper said.

He said the group would likely be asked to report back to the Town Council by the fall.

Kate Irish Collins can be reached at 780-9097 or [email protected]. Follow Kate on Twitter: @KIrishCollins.

Yarmouth’s Latchstring Park is at the busy intersection of West Main and West Elm streets. The town is looking into making it safer and more inviting.


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