City council approves land-swap between Mesa Marin sports complex and City in the Hills park

BAKERSFIELD, Calif. - City council members unanimously approved a controversial land-swap Wednesday that would eliminate plans of a proposed park in a City in the Hills neighborhood. 

According to the land-swap, the 11-acres of land near City Hills and Garden Park drives will now be used to build 53 residential homes. 

The plan for a park will now be moved to expand the Mesa Marin sports complex. 

"My hope is that as time passes and the positive effects of this transaction begin to come in to fruition that your community and your lives will be improved," said Councilmember Ken Weir. 

Residents said they were promised a park by developers years ago, but when the developer went bankrupt, the park became the city's problem. 

"For those who feel betrayed or frustrated..I firmly believe any betrayal that happened, happened before this meeting," Weir told residents. 

Homeowners in the area took to the podium Wednesday night  to explain to councilmembers why they needed the park in their neighborhood.

"The 178 will be a six lane freeway that you're asking children to be crossing over," said one City in the Hills resident. 

City officials hope to include a dog park, spray park and even a skate park to the new Mesa Marin expansion. 

The city recently put $1.7 million into a separate City in the Hills park after the original developer left it unfinished. 

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