Highlights of the newly renovated Pioneer Park include a huge multi-story playground that is ADA compliant, and a splash pad which includes a 15-foot-high water wall that is the first of its kind in Arizona. The 9,000-square foot playground is designed to feel like you are playing in the trees. There is also a 500-foot-long elevated ribbon walkway that connects the main central plaza area to the playground.
**The American Planning Association (APA) has named Pioneer Park in Mesa, Arizona, one of six Great Public Spaces on APA’s annual Great Places in America list for 2019.
While Pioneer Park has many new amenities, two of its iconic features have been preserved. The Daughters of the Utah Pioneers monument, located on the south end of the park, has been updated to improve visibility and restore the interactive nature of the monument. Also, restoration work has been taking place on the historic Southern Pacific Engine #2355, which has been at the park since 1958. The train restoration project, which is being funded by private donations, will continue for several more months.
Other improvements include remodeled restrooms with updated fixtures to comply with new ADA guidelines, relocation of two basketball courts, new landscaping in multiple areas and new plazas to enhance historic park features. LED lighting fixtures throughout the park and expanded wi-fi with the creation of a fiber network connection will support visitor needs and special events such as movies in the park. Approximately 130 new trees have been planted while the existing beautiful trees continue to mature. The 12 horseshoe pits remain and have been updated through the volunteer efforts of the East Valley Horseshoe Club.