Sterling Heights' new community center has earned a design accolade, and the city has been recognized for it's engagement response during COVID-19, in this year's Michigan Parks and Recreation Association (mParks) awards.
This week mParks announced the Sterling Heights Parks and Recreation department will receive two awards at their virtual annual conference on Feb. 2, 2021. The department will be awarded the 2021 Facility Design Award for the new community center
, opened earlier this year, and the 2021 COVID-19 Engagement Award for the creation of virtual and in-person programming services or practices in the face of the pandemic.
Kyle Langlois is proud of the Parks and Recreation department in Sterling Heights.
Judging criteria for the facility design award included local significance, degree of innovation, aesthetic quality, functionality and construction viability. Sterling Heights Parks and Recreation Director Kyle Langlois said he is humbled and thrilled to receive the two awards from mParks.
“I am incredibly proud of our entire Parks and Recreation team, as well as being a part of an organization that recognizes the importance of Parks and Recreation and supports our efforts,” said Langlois. “We cut the ribbon on our brand new Community Center just two weeks before the pandemic forced a Stay Home order, but we didn’t let that dictate how we moved forward."
"Right from the start, our team worked quickly to recognize the needs of our community and create new ways to provide recreation to our residents at a time when it would have been much easier to just pull the plug for a while. Sterling Heights has been leading the charge for providing safe and responsible programs during this pandemic.”
The city was recognized for it's response to COVID-19 based on the Parks and Recreation department’s ability to demonstrate that the organizational and program changes implemented were unique to the community as well as sustainable for future operations.
“With the passing of the Recreating Recreation millage in 2016, Sterling Heights residents confirmed city council’s strong commitment to improving and focusing on parks, recreation and sense of place,” said Sterling Heights Mayor Michael Taylor. “We congratulate the entire Parks and Recreation department on being recognized for their hard work and dedication to creating world-class recreational opportunities for our entire community.”