Backlick Park is finally getting renovated, a new sign on Backlick Road announces.
The Fairfax County Park Authority approved a plan in late January for a complete renovation of the long-neglected park, costing nearly $1.1 million, to include a new playground area and tennis court. The existing playground will be removed and replaced with separate playgrounds for children in the 2-5 and 5-12 age groups.
The gazebo will be replaced with a new picnic shelter. The fitness stations will be removed, and new fitness equipment will be consolidated in one area near the park’s entrance. New fencing will be installed around the tennis court. The asphalt trails will be upgraded. The benches and picnic tables will be removed and replaced, and the parking area will be renovated.
Construction is expected to begin shortly after completion of the initial design and permitting phases. Most of the funding will come from a park bond passed by voters in 2016.
The facilities at Backlick Park, at 4516 Backlick Road in Annandale, were constructed in the early 1980s and have fallen into disrepair due to lack of maintenance.
Binod Gupta, a member of the Elan Mews-Royal Court townhouse community’s HOA, is pleased that the Park Board is finally taking action after he and his neighbors had repeatedly complained about the deteriorating and unsafe conditions in the park.
“Mason District deserves better than what is at Backlick Park, and we are finally getting it after much complaining, criticizing, and following up,” Gupta says.
Gupta had reached out to Park Authority staff, the Park Board, and Mason Supervisor Penny Gross multiple times about a broken slide, beat-up picnic tables, unsafe trails, low-hanging branches, weeds, trash, and other problems. In August 2016, he even got the park featured on a “7 on Your Side” segment on a WJLA TV news program.
Park Authority staff and local volunteers took part in a clean-up event in October at Backlick Park. Gupta says the HOA is interested in forming an Adopt-A-Park relationship with the Park Authority to make sure the park stays in good condition after the renovation.