The City of Watsonville has been awarded a $3.5 million California State Parks Statewide Park Program grant to revitalize the downtown City Plaza.
The grant funds will allow the City to integrate new recreational features and upgrade the park’s infrastructure to help accommodate 20+ annual events and weekly farmers’ market in and around the plaza.
"Our Watsonville Plaza represents the heart of our community,” said Mayor Jimmy Dutra. “For generations it has offered a place for the community to gather and for children to play. We are extremely excited and fortunate to be receiving this grant in order to move forward the revitalization of the plaza. This is yet another project that our city will be able to implement in our beautiful city."
The City Plaza Revitalization Project includes updating the gazebo in the center of the park, renovating the historic community fountain, improving landscaping and lighting throughout the park, adding a permanent stage with seating areas, game tables, group picnic areas, a play station, public art, a circular walkway around the middle of the plaza, a drinking fountain with bottle-filling station, bicycle parking, improved electrical infrastructure to facilitate events and performances, and signage to highlight the historical elements of the park.
This project will not only weave together the space's rich history with the community's current and modern use of this culturally significant asset, but it will also increase recreational opportunities and protect a safe green space for residents.
The Watsonville City Plaza is on the National Register of Historic Places with its classic design that includes a bandstand and fountain.