As We See It

Whose park is it, anyway?

Home Sweet home? Huntridge Circle Park came under fire in 2006 when the homeless were served food there.
Photo: Steve Marcus

There’s a bit of irony in the air as residents discuss four proposals for the Las Vegas Veterans Memorial Park, slated for Huntridge Circle Park, an area once mired in controversy over the homeless, scores of whom are veterans. The models, unveiled last week at the Fifth Street School, vary in design, from full-on landscaping changes and structured walkways to the addition of sculptures in the 3-acre park near Maryland Parkway and Charleston Boulevard. Whistle-clean and reverential, they depict a different image of the park than its history—once a popular gathering spot for the homeless but closed by the city in 2006, days after a fatal stabbing involving a fight between two homeless men. The park (and the city) had already drawn national attention for the city’s banning of feeding of the homeless. The city says it’s too soon to know who will oversee the maintenance and security of the park, which has been around since 1942 and was given a $1.7 million makeover in 2003. The nonprofit Las Vegas Veterans Memorial Corporation chose the Park for its central location, stating on its website: “The park has a long history as part of the Las Vegas community.” History, indeed.

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Kristen Peterson

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