ST. LOUIS – Forest Park has just about everything except basketball. That’s all likely to change soon.
Forest Park Forever and the St. Louis Department of Parks, Recreation, and Forestry are teaming up to host four open houses looking for feedback on proposed basketball court designs. The project was first introduced in 2021 by Greg Hayes, the director of the parks department.
“There hadn’t been much community interest until a few years ago,” Hayes said.
The proposed courts would be placed near the Dennis and Judith Jones Visitor Center. Currently, there’s no final design, but preliminary concepts have a mix of full and half courts.
Since the initial proposal in 2021, the project is now seeking community feedback on proposed court designs by SWT Design.
“To be able to see where Forest Park is today is just spectacular,” said Ted Spaid, a landscape architect for SWT Design. “This is just another feather in the cap for the city in terms of creating spaces for everybody.”
Spaid has worked on a few other Forest Park projects, including the Art Hill renovation and the Central Fields renovation that added rugby and soccer fields.
“I went to high school in the city of St. Louis, I played basketball in St. Louis,” Spaid said. “So to see this in the point and time to come to fruition is really gratifying.”
A final design will be presented in March to the Forest Park Advisory Board. If approved, construction on the courts could begin as soon as this fall.
“I can’t wait to see the next generation of kids that are going to be an NBA player that may have played on these courts, so I’m looking forward to that,” Spaid said.
There will be three more open houses on Jan. 31 at the Marquette Recreation Center where you can leave feedback. Also, the Forest Park Dennis and Judith Jones Visitor and Education Center the following day, and the O’Fallon Park YMCA the following Thursday. Each event is from 4:00 p.m. to 7:00 p.m.
You can leave your own feedback on the proposed designs here.