CPA Proposals & Projects

City Parks - Playgrounds




Rehabilitate these community parks and playgrounds to meet current needs for active and passive recreation, based on initial site inventories and assessments, land surveys, community participation, and development of design alternatives leading to final designs.


  • Commissioner of Parks & Recreation
    City of Newton
    246 Dudley Road
    Newton, MA 02459
    phone: 617.796.1500


(all funds for recreation)

 for master planning & design:

$292,080 CPA funds appropriated
$15,580 unspent CPA funds returned
$276,500 CPA funds spent for master plans & final designs

 for construction:


CPA funds requested for Newton Highlands Playground            

$3,555,000  TOTAL PROJECT COST for Newton Highlands Playground, anticipated in proposal
$2,500,000 CPA funds recommended & appropriated for Newton Highlands Playground
$2,848,864 TOTAL PROJECT COST for Newton Highlands Playground, anticipated as of November 2017, deferring new support building to a future phase

Newton Highlands / Joseph Lee Playground



Implement the 2008 CPA-supported master plan below by: rehabilitating this community park to improve the usability, accessibility, and aesthetics of the playing fields; installing new play equipment; and rehabilitating existing woodland paths.


design & construction funding:

last updated August 2017

 $200,000 final design: CPA funds recommended & appropriated
 $2,500,000 construction: CPA funds recommended & appropriated
$99,000 construction: Community Development Block Grant (CDBG) funds for accessibility (federal funds administered by City of Newton)
$185,000 construction: City of Newton (Overlay Surplus)
$27,500 construction: Parks & Recreation Dept. operating budget, including staff time for project management
 $54,000 construction: anticipated but not yet committed community fundraising
$2,848,864  TOTAL PROJECT COST, anticipated as of November 2017, deferring new support building to a future phase
NOTE: Total funding sources listed above do not equal estimated total project cost. Parks & Recreation Dept. will submit final, reconciled costs & funding sources in summer 2018.

Funding Process - Design




14 February 2013 - final design pre-proposal, with large-scale aerial photograph & map and board of site photographs

13 November 2013 - final design full proposal, including: project summary, budgets, letters of support, supporting photos & maps This large file may load slowly.




22 January 2014 - slide presentation to CPC public hearing and minutes of CPC public hearing

3 February 2014 - additional letters of support

March 2014 - updated project budgets & response to CPC/community questions

1 April 2014 - CPC funding recommendation

22 April 2014 - Board order (appropriation)

11 December 2014 - CPC agreement to revised funding conditions (elimination of non-CPA matching funds)


Funding Process - Construction


12 November 2015 - construction full proposal, including: project summary, budgets, project team, site history, city & state reviews of project design

Some files below are large and may load slowly. To see plans at full scale, set viewing to 100%.

project plans :

project background reports:

1 December 2015 - additional community letters received by the CPC

10 December 2015 - After this public hearing, the CPC voted 7-1 to recommend $2,500,000 of funding for this proposal. The CPC docketed this amount with the City Council in December, but at the request of the Commissioner of Parks & Recreation, agreed to hold its written recommendation pending receipt of a final plan for the project, which might be phased or reduced in scope.

May 2016 - Commissioner of Parks & Recreation updates to the CPC

8 June 2016 - CPC funding recommendation ($2.5 million)

11 July 2016 - City Council order (appropriation)


Project News


Spring 2008 - Highlands Playground Master Plan This long file may load slowly.

July 2011 - revised site plan - Option 3

8 May 2018 - final report to CPC, with photographs; final confirmed costs & funding sources to be submitted summer 2018

Upper Falls Playground

Implement the first phase of the CPA-supported master plan.


$450,000 CP funds requested (historic resources)

Funding Process - Construction


December 2007 - proposal, with attachments:

23 January 2008 - public hearing presentation (with photos)

19 March 2008 - CPA eligibility review (based on statute as of 2008)
Based on advice from the City of Newton Law Department, the CPC declined to consider this proposal in the historic resources category until its historic resources rationale had been strengthened.

Master Planning for Upper Falls & Highlands Playgrounds


Funding Process


January 2005-March 2006 - proposal (submitted January 2005) This long document may load slowly.

  • petition for Highlands Playground only (submitted to Parks & Recreation Dept. January 2005)
  • timeline & costs (submitted 24 March 2006)

March 2006 - public hearing presentation (with photos) This long document may load slowly.

20 April 2006 - CPC funding recommendation unknown link

5 June 2006 - Board order (appropriation)

Project News


1897 - artist's view of Upper Falls Playground's future site

Spring 2008 - Upper Falls Playground Master Plan This long file may load slowly.

Spring 2008 - Highlands Playground Master Plan This long file may load slowly.

July 2011 - Highlands Playground evised site plan - Option 3


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