This letter is directed to the mayor and Glen Rose City Council: Where’s the plan for Oakdale Park? I’m not referring to the business plan or the operational plan but the design plan.

Renovations and remodeling at Oakdale have been underway for several months

now and still there is no evidence that the city intends to hire the expertise it needs for this project. The city has at its disposal a very competent staff to do the work but has failed to hire the team needed to direct that staff.

Expecting Billy Huckaby, whose primary job is promotion of the city and its events, to oversee all of this is inappropriate and unfair. Are design decisions, such as what material to use to renovate a ceiling, really being made according to the personal taste of one or two members of the council?

We’ve already seen what has been done to the trees and how this has significantly changed the character of the park. How much history has been destroyed or removed simply because the city government has not figured out that they are not qualified to make decisions of this nature without expert direction? How much opportunity has been missed to remodel the buildings in the most appropriate and creative ways? What about the costs of a project like this being undertaken with no plan?

Why haven’t you availed yourselves of the abundant expertise and resources within our community? How could you approve $10,000 plus expenses to hire someone to layout the new RV spaces before any expert evaluation and plan for the original park?

The last I heard, the job of a mayor and a city council was supposed to be one of overseeing the business of the city. Were you elected to be designers or experts in landscape or architectural preservation? No.

Oakdale Park is not just another piece of property to be developed and it is not your private property to do with as you please. Its historical value and uniqueness makes it one of the treasures of our state and certainly a major part of the soul of Glen Rose. Your true obligation here is one of stewardship.

It is absolutely critical that you fulfill this obligation by immediately enlisting a team of architectural, landscape and design experts who can give Oakdale Park the consideration and direction it deserves. Your citizens, and all the many others who love Oakdale, deserve this, too.

Suzanne Gentling

Glen Rose