by Michele Beasley
Flood Park is beloved by neighbors, many of whom walk it regularly, and by families who make good use of its extensive picnic areas. On weekends, the park is teeming with life- the smell of food will make anyone hungry as birthdays and reunions are celebrated.
The 21-acre park is remarkable for its variety of heritage trees, including coast live oaks, California bay laurels and coast redwoods. It also has a variety of playing fields and courts, ranging in condition from unusable to pretty decent shape. Once upon a time, Flood Park had a huge swimming pool where thousands of county youngsters learned to swim, making Flood Park the ultimate destination for relaxation and fun in the 1940s and 1950s.
In recent years, the park has been quieter, and at one point, closed. Now though, plans are coming together that re-imagine the park as a destination for all kinds of fun, from baseball to tennis and more. The plan addresses a pent up need for more playing fields while retaining heritage trees that offer peace and solitude for nature lovers.
The community has an opportunity to comment on the environmental documents for the proposed improvements to the park. A 45-day circulation period kicked off on October 3 and wraps up on November 16. The San Mateo County Parks Department will hold a community meeting on Wednesday, November 1 at 7pm at the Menlo Park Senior Center (100 Terminal Avenue). The document is an opportunity to understand the characteristics of Flood Park today, the proposed improvements to the park, environmental impacts, and proposed mitigation measures.
Some of the proposed project features are:
- A soccer/ lacrosse field in the northeast corner
- A demonstration garden near the park entrance
- The preservation of existing adobe buildings, with the exception of one bathroom
- New uses such as a basketball court and pump track (an off-road terrain for cyclists who ride by pumping rather than pedaling)
- New and renovated bathrooms
- A tree-lined promenade
San Mateo County Parks is aware of neighbors’ concerns about traffic, parking, noise levels and impacts to historic adobe structures, among other things. The environmental impact report addresses these concerns.
For nearly 80 years, Flood Park has been a popular destination for people throughout San Mateo County. Today, the park is receiving some timely attention that will revitalize it for a new generation of park enthusiasts. Check out the plans and share your thoughts on the environmental documents by November 16.