BLOOMINGTON - Bloomington, Ind. -- After years in the making, the city of Bloomington is gearing up to open a 57-acre former railroad property that it says will be the new community hub of the city.  Switchyard Park will this weekend host a grand opening event to showcase its amphitheater, skatepark, community gardens and more. 

The park extends from West Grimes Lane to Country Club Road and between South Walnut and South Rogers Streets. 

 Features of the park include a pavilion, fitness stations, basketball, pickleball and bocce ball courts, splash pad, accessible playground, bosque (formal forest), and picnic shelter; and officials say it will have the capacity to host large-scale events and festivals.   

Plans for the park started in 2009, when the city first purchased the land. Construction of the new Switchyard Park didn’t start until in 2017 with a year-long project to install infrastructure. 

The TIF-funded $34 million project approved by the Redevelopment Commission was designed by Rundell Ernstberger Associates, an Indianapolis-based landscape architecture firm. 

A ribbon-cutting ceremony and program will be held Saturday from 6 p.m. to 8 p.m.  The event will also feature remarks by Bloomington Mayor John Hamilton.

Switchyard Park grand opening activities are set to continue on Sunday from 11 a.m. through 3 p.m. Free interactive children’s activities and live music are scheduled throughout the day, with food available for purchase from food trucks.