Sure, park users want picnic pavilions and ball fields and tennis courts and lush grass meadows.
But equally important is a much-used, though less-mentioned amenity - the park restroom.Ask any parks planner about the vandalism problem that plagues public facilities - restrooms being Public Target No. 1 - and you'll get an earful.
It's an issue nationwide, says Gregg Cudworth, supervisor of parks planning for West Valley City. "It's what we spend most of our time thinking about. If you could eliminate all the hardware inside a stall, you would be in great shape, but you can't do that."
Building restroom facilities is expensive, too. Cudworth said building a 500-square-foot commode with three men's and three women's stalls costs a city at least $70,000.
But keeping them in usable condition is even more of a creative drain on planners. Consider the lowly toilet paper dispenser, a favorite target for rowdy teens.
"They stand on it or jump on it or beat it off the wall. So you have to do things like use steel pipe or put it in brick."
Cudworth is considering bathroom facilities where the stalls would open up right into the park.
"You try to eliminate the situation where more than one person can get out of sight together at one time." Legally required handicapped stalls, which are big enough to allow five or six youths inside, seem to be irresistible to some young vandals.