SJB Group revises Crescent Park design plans

DERON TALLEY, EDITOR @dvillechief

The architects and designers in charge of remodeling Crescent Park in Donaldsonville have constructed a new designed based on input and feedback from a community meeting during the summer.

Eric Poché, and Andy Hursey of SJB Group, LLC presented the new plans with revisions at the last city council meeting and at a Rotary Club Luncheon.

The first major revision to the plan is to provide roughly 25 to 30 foot stage area towards the rear of the park with two wings coming off of each side with electrical, water hook ups, which will also be distributed in different areas in the site for a Farmer’s Market where people can set booths up or what have you.

The previous plan had the Farmer’s Market in the front of the park along Mississippi Street.

The plans also include an amphitheater type area to replace the rectangular pad that is there now, where there will have a very slight slope that goes down about 18 to 24 inches so there are steps that go to the front of the stage so it sets that stage a little bit higher.

“If you think of a typical amphitheater, we wanted to do something that would push the stage up a little bit to where you are, for lack of a better term, this bowl going down to it,” Poché said. “But also where you could set chairs on and dance on if you had a band performing.”

Poché said the stage will be elevated 18 to 20 inches, enough to have steps, and set it off with a slope that will allow both seating for bands, weddings, and fireworks for the Third of July celebration.

The columns by the sidewalks as well as the columns by the main entrance, and the rod iron fencing going around the park will remain in place, but Poché said they intend to repurpose the fencing across the front to create that “gateway effect.”

“You want to have a little more of a fencing view corridor coming through the center and the pillars with the plaques in them are going to stay,” Poché said. “The trees that are there is another thing that is being looked at as we move further through the process.”

Mayor Leroy Sullivan added at the Rotary Club Luncheon that the “Friends of Crescent Park” group had the rod iron fencing installed and paid money and “they were unhappy with the fact that they were going to be removed.”

Hursey said the reason behind Crescent Park was to welcome folks off of the river and said it was brought up to have a focal point at the entrance of the park. So they incorporated having what could be the Donaldsonville logo in bronze or cast iron embedded in the entry area.

The architects are making sure that drain inlets will be installed at the bottom of the sunken plaza at the base of the stage and invert elevation.