Gilbert Park complaints spark policy change

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By Tia Lynn Ivey

managing editor

Recent complaints over out-of-hand social events at Gilbert Park have prompted the City of Madison to revise its policy on neighborhood park events by the end of the year.

At the monthly regular city council meeting on Monday, Oct. 10, Josie Jefferson a Madison resident who lives near Gilbert Park, appeared before the council to complain about a gathering at Gilbert Park on Oct. 1.

Jefferson told the council that the event was too loud, overcrowded and she could smell urine from people relieving themselves outside. She also complained that people illegally parked on the surrounding streets.

According to David Nunn, city manager, Gilbert Park is one of Madison’s “passive parks,” like Wellington and Hill parks, which is not equipped for large events due to limited parking, no restrooms or lights, and close proximity to residential homes.

“We are going to write policies where people can’t have organized events that are advertised and we will post appropriate signage,” said Nunn, who noted this policy should cut down on larger events from taking place at Gilbert Park. “It’s to curb disturbances that arise in neighborhood parks, so the property is not abused and the patrons of the parks are respectful of the people who live around it.”

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