Volunteers tackled the park drainage issues at Jewel Lake Park during a Neighborhood Park Fix-It on September 9, 2017. The crew of neighbors and park enthusiasts replanted the rain garden with native trees and shrubs in new soil. Rain gardens, made up of water-loving plants, are a natural solution to reducing erosion, flooding, and water pollution by collecting storm water runoff from paved urban areas and giving it time to be absorbed into the ground. The old Jewel Lake Park rain garden was located between the parking lot and pavilion and had been holding water instead of draining properly.
The rain garden improvements are in conjunction with a larger park construction project. The voter supported 2016 Parks Bond will fund a new inclusive playground at Jewel Lake Park. Construction of an inclusive zipline began this year on the northern side of the park while the full playground will be installed next summer on the current playground footprint. The decision to install the zipline was influenced by Sand Lake Elementary School students who have dreamed of a zipline in their neighborhood.