Splish splash. Akron broke ground Monday on the city's first public splash pad.

The city is building the water feature at the Joy Park Community Center, 825 Fuller St., in the East Akron neighborhood.

“Our residents should not need to travel outside our community to find the recreation offerings they need for their family,” Mayor Dan Horrigan said in a news release. “I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again — public space is a public right. Parks and recreational offerings reduce crime, improve property values, and strengthen connections among neighbors. Our children deserve safe, clean places to play, learn and grow, close to home.”

 

The city hopes the splash pad — covering about 1,600 square feet and featuring eight jets, sprinklers and bubblers — will open in August.

Akron officials decided to build the splash pad after a survey showed that residents enjoy the city pools and wanted to see more water amenities. They said Akron is one of the largest communities in Northeast Ohio without a splash pad or spray park.

The Joy Park splash pad is being constructed by Daniel A. Terreri & Sons Inc. and will be ADA accessible. The project cost is $193,000.

The city also is in the process of bidding a second splash park for Patterson Park in the North Hill neighborhood. That park is expected to be ready for the 2020 season.

“Once these two splash parks are completed, we will have water amenities in the north, south, east and west of our city,” City Council President Margo Sommerville said in a prepared statement. “But that is just the beginning. We will be making significant investments in our two existing pools and working toward Mayor Horrigan’s goal of constructing a splash pad in every city ward.”