About SPNA

The Sylvan Park Neighborhood Association (SPNA) is the collective community voice for addressing neighborhood issues such as zoning, security, beautification, traffic, metropolitan services, and environment.

SPNA members meet on the second Monday of each month at 7 p.m. in the Senior Renaissance Center of Cohn Adult Learning Center at 4805 Park Avenue.

About Sylvan Park

Welcome to Sylvan Park! We hope you love this neighborhood as much as we do. Here are some helpful answers to commonly asked questions from newcomers.

What, exactly, is Sylvan Park?
The boundaries of the growing Nashville neighborhood are Charlotte Ave. to the north, Richland Creek to the west, railroad tracks to the south and east. Here is a Google map of the Sylvan Park neighborhood (zoom in for more detail).

Why do Sylvan Park residents love living here?
Here are just a few reasons.

  • Sylvan Park's many restaurants and businesses, within walking distance.

  • The newly-built McCabe Park Community Center, which offers patrons of all ages a modern and friendly place to exercise or spend leisure time, in a beautiful park setting; it also offers a variety of fitness classes and a full-service fitness center.

  • Richland Park Branch Library offers many programs for all ages, right in the neighborhood.

  • Sylvan Park Paideia Design Center is a well-regarded public elementary school with an active PTO.

  • Many Nashville Community Education classes take place at the Cohn School.

  • The popular Richland Park Farmer’s Market is on Saturday mornings in Richland Park.

  • Speaking of parks, the neighborhood has two of them - Richland Park and McCabe Park.

  • The Richland Creek Greenway is a 3.8 mile paved, looped path in our neighborhood, connecting McCabe Park and the Sylvan Park neighborhood with shopping centers along White Bridge Pike and Harding Road, and Nashville State Community College.

  • The McCabe Golf Course is a 27-hole golf course and practice facility that has been voted best place to play by Nashville Scene Magazine.

  • There are many opportunities to meet and socialize with your neighbors (see some links below for many active community organizations).

What should I do when I move here?

  • Join Nextdoor! :) Our neighborhood has an extremely active online community on Nextdoor, a private social network where neighbors can buy/sell goods, get business recommendations and experiences, share news and emergency alerts, and so much more. There are also lots of Facebook pages for neighborhood groups, including (but not limited to): SPNA, Sylvan Park Moms' Club, Sylvan Park PTO, Councilwoman Kathleen Murphy, the SPURS Running Club, Richland Creek Watershed Alliance, Friends of Richland Park Branch Library, tons of local restaurants and businesses, and so many more.

  • Join the Sylvan Park Neighborhood Association (SPNA). Since 1984, SPNA has been the collective community voice for addressing neighborhood issues such as zoning, security, beautification, traffic, metropolitan services, and environment. We sponsor a variety of social events throughout the year including a family movie night, annual golf tournament, a 4th of July parade, Night Out Against Crime, and a holiday party with caroling. There is also an informative quarterly neighborhood SPNA newsletter.

  • Sign up for Kathleen Murphy's email newsletter. Our councilwoman's updates contain helpful information and important links and events for Nashville's District 24, where our neighborhood is located. Her email is kathleen.murphy@nashville.gov if you need to reach her directly.

  • Explore the neighborhood! With all the nearby restaurants and places to go for recreation, the hard thing will be deciding what to do first, and which are your favorites!

What is the history of Sylvan Park?
Sylvan Park was established in 1887 and our neighborhood continues to evolve. Sylvan Park has a fascinating history, chronicled in “Nashville’s Sylvan Park,” by Yvonne Eaves and Doug Eckert (available through the Nashville Public Library system).

Who should I contact if...

  • I see something suspicious or concerning, but not necessarily criminal? Call the police nonemergency number at 615-862-8600.

  • I notice a problem with a city service or codes issue? You can submit a public works request here, or file a codes complaint here. Councilwoman Kathleen Murphy is a great resource for this, but you can also find a lot of information on the Nashville Metro web site 24 hours a day.

  • I have some other really, really random question? Nextdoor is about to be your best friend.

Tuesday, February 27, 2007

Elmington Park playground being replaced

City Paper reporter Bill Harless explains that plans to demolish and replace the playground at Elmington Park a few blocks from Murphy Road have upset some nearby residents:
The Metro Parks Department is spending roughly $3.2 million to demolish old city playgrounds and replace them with new playgrounds compliant with the federal Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA).

Since 2003, the department has demolished and replaced 37 park playgrounds, and it is in the midst of replacing six more at a cost of roughly $75,000 to $80,000 a piece. The department, since 2003, has also rebuilt 39 parks on public school grounds. The playground building frenzy comes on the heels of a 2001 report in the Parks Department five-year master plan that said only 8 percent of the city’s parks were “in satisfactory or good condition” and that 73 percent “needed to be replaced.”

The department’s good intentions, however, have stirred some nostalgia in West Nashville, where the playground at Elmington Park, a well-loved, 13.3-acre corner park at the intersection of West End and Bowling avenues, is facing demolition.

Fifteen years ago, a band of West Nashville neighbors raised roughly $40,000 in private money to pay for the playground along with matching city dollars, and — although they are understanding of the Parks Department’s desire to build safer playgrounds — they are sad to see their old playground being demolished and replaced with one that, for the sake of modern safety standards, will not have sand covering its ground.

Burkley Allen, who lives a block away from the park and led the fund-raising drive, said she understands why the Parks Department is installing the safer, ADA-compliant playgrounds and said she has no beef with the department — the public planning process for the Master Plan was an open one, she says. But, still, Allen was startled to see the wrecking ball at Elmington Park.
It sounds like this is being done for the right reasons, but I suppose any change--and especially one that brings back memories for local childhoods--is bound to generate both positive and negative reactions. At the very least, it's something to think about the next time you decide to take the kids to the park.


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