At its meeting Monday, Jan. 27, Reynoldsburg City Council will vote on spending $65,000 to buy 1.9 acres at 1140 Waggoner Road with the goal to build a second entrance and parking lot at Pine Quarry Park.
“A visible entrance with parking on Waggoner Road will allow more residents to experience Pine Quarry Park, have a picnic or just a nature walk,” Mayor Joe Begeny said. “Once the entrance is completed, someone could walk or bike from Summit High School to Waggoner Road without traffic issues. This will also help connect parts of city to the Olde Town area and eventually beyond.”
The 39-acre park at 8000 Kingsley Drive is nestled among the homes between Main and Broad streets, and visitors can access the park where the road dead-ends into a small parking lot.
About a half dozen hiking trails run through tall pinewoods and a rocky gorge once used as a limestone quarry in the 1800s and early 1900s.
The land was donated to the city in the 1970s for a recreation area, and the city in 1995 spent $95,000 to buy the lot to the north, at 1106 Waggoner. A house that once stood on the property has since been demolished and preliminary plans call for that site to be combined with the property at 1140 Waggoner for a second entrance and parking area.
“Most people are excited to have additional parking because the current lot holds about six cars,” said John Seryak, co-founder of the Friends of Pine Quarry Park, a community group organized three years ago as a way to “get more people into the park.”
There were concerns about vandalism and disrepair at the park a few years ago, Seryak said, but much of that has changed.
The city in 2018 replaced two dilapidated bridges that cross French Run Creek, which runs along the eastern portion of the park. The existing parking lot was resurfaced the same year and new timber fencing, a retaining wall and a trench drain were installed.
Begeny called the Waggoner Road purchase “one step in this overall process.”
Reynoldsburg is in the early stages of developing a comprehensive parks plan for the entire city, he said.
Once finished, officials should have a better idea on the cost and timeline for parks projects, including Pine Quarry.