Beginning in 2010, the Town of Fuquay-Varina set out to master plan Fleming Loop Park, a 36-acre tract east of downtown. At that time, Parks and Recreation Department programming identified the need for upgraded play fields (both soccer and baseball) and WithersRavenel began the planning effort for these desired uses at Fleming Loop. The master plan proposed four soccer fields; four baseball fields, including one signature stadium field; a playground; and upgraded parking facilities. This plan was approved by the Town Council, but it remained a planning document for the next few years.
Fast-forward to 2015 when, despite not having any infrastructure besides a gravel parking lot and some portable toilets, it had become the Town’s most used park on weekends for various athletic programming. Trends in local sports had evolved—soccer had outstripped baseball in popularity—and the Town decided to revise the master plan for this park to keep up with current demand. The Town needed multi-purpose fields that could host soccer, lacrosse, football, and even rugby. The Town of Fuquay-Varina also desired to have the park designed to accommodate a balloon festival with a large attendance.
Collaborating with the Town of Fuquay-Varina, WithersRavenel completed the master plan revision for the park property, locating seven multi-purpose play fields, an approximately one-mile walking trail, playgrounds, and shelters. The parking facilities were upgraded from undefined gravel and grassy areas to include 314 parking spaces with curb-and-gutter, storm drainage, and landscaping. The Town is currently running programming and also shares field time and space with local and regional sports organizations.
In addition, WithersRavenel assisted the Town in preparing documents for application to the Parks and Recreation Trust Fund (PARTF). The application was successful and the PARTF grant was awarded in September 2016; detailed design begin soon after.
After a carefully considered development process characterized by frequent stakeholder collaboration and communication, Fleming Loop Park re-opened in February 2020.