Entrance to Lucy Dell pond
Posted November 17, 2017 | 4:12 PM

Pond is Centerpiece of Neighborhood's New Oasis

Backed by residents and funded by Hillsborough County, Lucy Dell Community Pond draws raves.

Lucy Dell residents are thrilled with the attractive pond and park next to their East Tampa neighborhood.

Once an eyesore, the 8.5-acre pond is now an asset. On Monday, Nov. 13, area residents and public officials gathered to applaud its transformation.

The restoration and enhancements are the talk of the neighborhood. "We are just very pleased," says Herbert Kinsey, president of the Lucy Dell Community Association. "Some people are already using it. I've seen people fishing from the pier. I've seen people walking around it. I've seen people running around it."

The $3.5 million project included restoring the pond, planting wetland and other native vegetation, building a lighted boardwalk, and installing exercise stations and a walking trail. A new road along the property's south border will open in a few months.

The pond previously had no amenities and was surrounded by brush. Now the area is a great place to work out or relax, perhaps even read a book.

Hillsborough County Parks & Recreation, Real Estate & Facilities, and Public Works collaborated on the project. It is among significant improvements in the neighborhood that the County has helped spearhead in recent years, along with a drainage system, streetlights, and speed bumps.

Aerial view of Lucy Dell

Lucy Dell is named for the woman who sold land for the subdivision in the mid-1960s. There are 25 houses and one duplex. Many of the residents, like Herbert, are original homeowners.

Despite the neighborhood's modest size, he says, there is a strong sense of community pride: "We're small. We don't have many fancy houses. We have homes."

The restoration turned an unused water basin into a community asset. "It's not a pond," Herbert said at the dedication ceremony. "It's an oasis."


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