Edison Mayor Sam Joshi announced the first three major projects of his administration during his State of the Township speech on Tuesday.
This included a splash park in Papaianni Park, a community garden in Swales Park, as well as major upgrades to the Toth Health Center.
"After the past few years of this pandemic, it's more important than ever that we preserve and expand these open-air spaces so our community can have the same wonderful experience I did growing up here in Edison," Mayor Joshi said.
"That's why I'm so excited to announce our first three municipal projects. These capital initiatives will create safe spaces for us to gather, learn, play – and like I did so many years ago… dream big about the future!"
The first project the Mayor spoke about was the splash park in Papaianni Park, honoring the diversity of Edison.
Designed to celebrate Edison's various cultures, including cultural artifacts reimagined as sprinklers, splash zones, and tipping buckets of water, the Splash Park will center around a model of the Edison Tower.
The splash park will be fully enclosed with a fence so families can relax and be at ease knowing their children can't stray too far. A family bathroom will also be available with changing stalls.
The Mayor also announced that Papaianni Park will be receiving a brand new turf field, as well as upgrades to directional signage and maps to ensure visitors can navigate the park with ease.
The second big initiative is the establishment of a community garden in Swales Park. The garden will boast 38 beds for growing fruits and vegetables, work tables where residents can work side by side, as well as a shed for storing supplies.
The Township is building the garden, but a nonprofit will run it, and there is already a process in place for residents to apply for a garden bed. A few beds will also be set aside to grow produce for local food pantries.
Residents that had been using this area for pick-up volleyball games will also be pleased to learn that a new-and-improved sand volleyball court will be installed nearby.
Mayor Joshi also announced that the Toth Health Center on Idlewild Road will be greatly expanded with an approximately two thousand square foot improvement project.
It will soon be renamed the "Toth Health and Senior Center," with programming at this location complementing the activities at the Edison Senior Center on Woodbridge Avenue, enabling them to service more residents.
"Fifteen percent of Edison's residents are 65 or older, and many of them have lived in our town for decades. They have seen our town through highs and lows and are a vital part of our community," Mayor Joshi said.
"The Toth Senior and Health Center will create a one-stop service area where seniors can receive medical attention and socialize with their friends, and our health department leaders will use the space for important community health and resource events."
Transportation routes will also be expanded to include the Toth Center, and the number of parking spaces will be increased to accommodate the new activities.
The Mayor also announced the baseball field behind the Toth Center will soon be renovated with a new turf baseball diamond.