The City of Baldwin City requests your input on the development of the downtown public green space known as the lotatorium.

  • Take the online survey
  • Come to the community visioning session, September 21, 5:30 pm – 6:30 pm. Free cookout before the BHS football game

Background – The Lotatorium is the public green space owned by the City of Baldwin City situated at 710 High Street between the Lumberyard Arts Center and the Baldwin City Post Office. The lot has been used for various community events include Maple Leaf Festival music tent, Festival of Lights, community theatre productions, Lumberyard Arts Center Bluegrass & BBQ and artwalk events, Chamber of Commerce WineFest, Baldwin Academy of Dance & Voice productions, BHS Football booster club pep rally and Baldwin City Recreation Commission activities. 
 
Goal – To develop the lotatorium into a public space with amenities that is ADA accessible. The City is currently soliciting public comments on how the lot should be used and what features and/or amenities the lot should have.  The main goal for the lot is to make this place usable for all citizens of Baldwin City and visitors alike.  
 
Funding – The City Council has FY19 budget authority for the preparation, construction and maintenance of the lot.  
 
Timeframe – To be determined. The Community Development committee is the initial decision-maker for the project, and are seeking public input. The City Council will make the final decision as a whole, but the committee is tasked to develop a plan for the lot first, and then bring the final design plan to the Council for approval. The committee consists of two Council members, City staff and one citizen advisor.  The committee is currently discussing the timeframe for the lot.  The committee would like to see the lot developed or at least construction beginning in 2019 on an initial phase of the overall project.  
 
Lot dimensions – The lot is estimated to be +/- 160 x 140 = 22,500 square feet (roughly one-half acre in size)

Lotatorium Development

Community Engagement Results

Purpose and Methods

The City of Baldwin City in partnership with the Baldwin City Chamber of Commerce and Lumberyard Arts Center developed and implemented community engagement tools to enable public input for the development of the lotatorium. The tools included 1) a stakeholder meeting[1]; 2) an online survey; 3) a community visioning event held September 21, 2018 and 4) an opportunity for BHS students to provide written feedback.

The Lotatorium Development Survey[2]was administered during the Fall 2018 as part of the City of Baldwin City’s effort for community participation in designing the downtown green space located between the Lumberyard Arts Center and the United States Postal Office.  The survey was comprised of four questions with the goals to 1) ascertain interest in the project and; 2) acquire prioritization of amenity inclusion in the project’s development. The survey was sent to the Baldwin City public at-large, Baker University faculty, students and Baldwin High School students via emails and social media including Chamber, City, BHS Bulletin and Citizens for the Future of Baldwin City Facebook posts.

Summary: Online Survey Results[3]

  • A total of 352 responses were returned representing the public at-large (57%), Baker students, faculty, staff (41%) and BHS students (2%).
  • Project interest was high with an average interest of 3.9 stars[4].
  • Overall, the top five amenities included: Public Restroom; Stage; Public Seating; Pavilion and Green Space with a Movie Screen following. A movie screen was the top priority of BHS students.
  • Frequent comments[5]included the importance of 1) minimal development—leaving as much green space as possible; 2) accessibility for people of all ages; 3) farmer’s market options; 4) attention to detail in the design of the stage including lighting and sound and 5) family friendly environment (i.e. activities for kids such as splash pad).

Summary: Visioning Event, 9/21/18

The community was invited to share their feedback during the Lumberyard Arts Center Third Friday Artwalk. The event was held in the lotatorium. Attendees were asked to prioritize their top three amenities using stickers. They could also select an additional two amenities they felt important. Frequency tabulation is shown on Table 1. These results from the community visioning event are similar to the online survey results.

Table 1. Amenity Frequency Tabulation.

Amenity Frequency
Stage 36
Restroom 34
Green Space 28
Movie Screen 20
Pavilion 19
Splash Pad 18
Seating 16
Public Art 12
Memorial Plaques 5
Fountain 1

 

Combined Survey and Visioning Results (compiled by Chris Thomas)

 

 

 

[1]Project stakeholders (n=25) were invited to attend a stakeholder lunch on 9/14/18 that included representatives from the City of Concordia. Concordia representatives shared the development of “Broadway Plaza” and best practices for downtown greenspace development.

[2]Survey questions and process were vetted and approved by the Community Development Committee.

[3]Request raw data from the City or the Chamber.

[4]Survey asked respondents to rate their interest in the project along five stars from one star (not of interest) to five stars (high interest).

[5]Survey asked respondents for feedback on additional amenities not included in the survey and for comments.