Approximately five years ago, Parks and Rec made an announcement that they no longer would replace playground equipment for the BOE. At approximately the same time at Branchville Elementary, there had been an unsafe playground structure that was removed. After Parks and Rec made this announcement, it left the community with no clear guidance on who would then be responsible to make these replacements going forward.
Fast forward to 2018 when Branchville Elementary needed to find a replacement solution for its playground. Within the project vision, it was very important for the PTA and the BES community to make sure that this new playground would also be ADA compliant to encompass the needs of all our BES students.
From the word go, Mr. Marconi was on board and made himself available to walk the property and listen to our playground concept ideas with BES staff, the PTA, and supported the concerns and requests of a parent committee, of which I was a part of.
Moreover, Mr. Marconi pointed out additional issues, like the poor blacktop conditions and the lack of fencing for security and safety which he felt needed to be a part of the renovation. Because of his experience with other playgrounds installed in town, he also prepared the committee for unforeseen challenges. He connected BES to the ADA commission to incorporate this into the playground vision. He connected the playground committee to town departments that needed to be involved. In addition, the First Selectman continued to partner with the BES community by financially funding the ADA compliant poured-in-place (PIP) surfacing to allow all children access to equipment.
In short, the new BES playground would not have happened without his expertise and guidance and support. The project was truly successful beyond our expectations thanks to the attention Mr. Marconi put into the partnership between the town, BES, and the parent community. He has a proven track record of being a steadfast advocate of Ridgefield’s schools and its students. I hope you will join me in supporting him for re-election on Tuesday, November 5th!
Branchville Elementary parent