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Fayetteville Officials Want To Chase Out Crime By Giving Kids A Place To Play

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FAYETTEVILLE — Fayetteville leaders hope to give one neighborhood a new look. They hope to chase out crime by giving people a place to play.

Retha Jones has seen many people come and go in her Bonnie Doone neighborhood. She has lived in her house for 60 years and counting. However, Jones admits home is not what it used to be. For years, the area has been plagued with crime and neglect.

"To me, it's home. I've been here so long, it's home," she says. "The crime rate has changed because we didn't have the crime when we first moved here."

Jones thinks one answer to crime prevention is recreation. City leaders seem to agree. They plan to build a park in the neighborhood between Blanton Road and Johnson Street.

"There's a high population of children in this area, and this is a densely populated section of the city. It merits having a park in the area," says Robert Barefoot of the city's engineering and maintenance department.

The city annexed Bonnie Doone two years ago. The proposed park is just one of many changes annexation has brought to the Fayetteville Area.

Jones hopes the plans for a park are a sign of better things to come.

"Some folks asked or have asked, 'How do you live over there,' and I say I have no problem," she says.

Right now, the city has not budgeted any money for the proposed park. Leaders hope to move their plans in the active phases by next July.

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Shani Blount, Reporter
David McCorkle, Photographer
Kamal Wallace, Web Editor

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