Approved improvements at Robie Park, including a playground, picnic area and benches, will be phased in, according to Gorham Town Manager Ephrem Paraschak. Contributed / Town of Gorham

The Gorham Town Council unanimously approved a master plan for Robie Park Tuesday.

The park will feature a gateway, picnic area, playground, walking trail, benches, a bicycle skills area for younger kids and signage with history of the park. The softball field, used by the high school, will remain in its current location at the park.

The plan also includes planting trees and blueberry bushes.

Neighbors and other townspeople two years ago rallied to support saving the 6.7-acre park between the municipal complex and the high school after the School Department with Town Council approval chopped down a stand of pine trees near the softball field. Residents, fearing the park would be turned into a parking lot, posted “Save Robie Park” signs on neighborhood lawns and a citizens group formed.

The Town Council appointed a committee chaired by Councilor Phil Gagnon to develop a master plan for the park and  hired a landscape consultant. A public meeting last summer to seek ideas packed the Town Council chambers.

The town has earmarked $275,000 in federal funds to pay for the park makeover.

Town Manager Ephrem Paraschak said in Tuesday’s meeting the work would not be “implemented tomorrow” but will be phased in.

The park was named in honor of Martha Robie, a town benefactor who was the widow of Frederick Robie, Maine’s 39th governor.

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