In a remarkable display of community engagement, the City of Fullerton organized a public meeting on June 29th to gather input from residents about the revitalization of Union Pacific Park and the construction of the Union Pacific Trail. The conference aimed to hear the public’s desires and ideas for these projects, with the park set to be refurbished and the trail transformed into a fully realized pathway connecting Union Pacific Park and Independence Park.
During the meeting, various discussions ensued, with attendees grappling with visualizing certain areas based on maps and images. To gain a better understanding, the proactive community decided to schedule an on-site visit to the park and walk the trail together.
Egleth Nuncci took the initiative to collect participants’ contact information, and on July 8th, an enthusiastic crowd, including new faces, gathered for the expedition. With the valuable assistance of the Parks and Police departments, the walkers could explore the proposed trail route safely. Among the participants were notable figures such as Parks and Recreation Commissioner Adrian Meza, Active Transportation committeemember Anjali Tapadia, and Fullerton School District Board Members Ruthi Hanchett and Aaruni Thakur.
As they traversed the trail, they encountered rough terrain filled with rocks, weeds, and litter. However, despite these challenges, everyone recognized the trail’s immense potential as a seamless pathway connecting the parks. After the enlightening walk, the project options were brought before the commission.
- Option 1 was to create a simple trail with a bike lane, fully funded by grant money from the city.
- Option 2 involved building an additional road alongside the path, but this would require city funding as the grant wasn’t sufficient to cover road construction.
Passionate voices emerged during the commission meeting, with many walkers advocating for the trail-only option, urging against sacrificing greenery for a road. Commissioner Meza thanked everyone who participated in the community walk, including city staff members, for their invaluable insights.
Ultimately, the commission voted in favor of the trail-only option, a testament to the power of community involvement and the collective vision for a connected, green, and vibrant future. The decision now heads to the council for final approval, further exemplifying the democratic process at work in shaping the future of Union Pacific Park and Trail based on the voices of the people it will serve.