Mayor Bob Buckhorn unveiled plans today to create a new city park around an East Tampa retention pond.
Neighbors welcomed the addition to an area that used to be more associated with drug dealing than daily exercise.
“We used to have people lined up like it was a convenience store,” said Cynthia Few, president of the College Hill Neighborhood Association.
Tampa police have gotten rid of the drug dealers. City crews took down the barbed-wire fence that once encompassed what used to be a dry basin criss-crossed by car tracks.
A new drainage plan for North 30th Street will send storm runoff into the basin now. On Wednesday, ducks, moor hens and egrets waded among the cattails filling the pond.
This week, city officials will hire a contractor to begin work on an asphalt path and landscaping around the pond.
The $500,000 project should take about six months, Buckhorn said.